Scottish Parliament Academic Fellowship Scheme

2020/21 Fellowship call now open!

The purpose of the Scottish Parliament is to hold the Scottish Government to account, scrutinise legislation and represent the people of Scotland by debating issues of national importance.

The Academic Fellowship Scheme, which is managed and hosted by the Scottish Parliament Information Centre (SPICe), enables academics to work on projects with the Parliament in support of this purpose.

The scheme aims to:

  • provide the Parliament with specialised resources which allow it to undertake and communicate analysis which would otherwise not be possible
  • increase the use of academic knowledge, skills and research within the Parliament
  • promote knowledge and understanding of the Parliament within the academic sector.

Due to the situation with COVID-19 we are currently only inviting bids for the following two topics:

  1. Sustainable pathways to COVID-19 recovery in Scotland
  2. The impact of Brexit related statutory instruments on the devolution settlement

Applicants should be prepared to start as soon as possible (and in the case of the Brexit related fellowship, no later than September 2020).  

In the coming months we are likely to have a further call for other proposals. We will provide further details on this as soon as they are available.

Further information:

How the scheme works and FAQs

Guidance on completing the application form

If you have any queries, please email [email protected]  

Click here to apply

Deadline for submitting bids is 5pm on Friday 12 June.

Academic Fellows currently working with SPICe

Dr Eve Hepburn is Director of PolicyScribe, a policy research consultancy specialising in policy analysis and research. Eve is looking at the impact of Brexit on immigration and the implications for Scotland. 


Eve has so far published a Guest Blog – The UK Migration Advisory Committee’s response to regional variation in the immigration system and a SPICe Briefing – Immigration Policy – the Countdown to Brexit 

Dr Filippo Fontanelli from the University of Edinburgh’s Law School is working with SPICe on a two-year academic fellowship on Brexit related issues. So far he has produced two blogs on The UK’s accession to the Government Procurement Agreement of the World Trade Organisation (Blogs: Part 1 and Part 2)

Sabina Siebert is Professor of Management in the Adam Smith Business School, University of Glasgow. Kevin Orr is Professor of Leadership and Governance in the School of Management, University of St Andrews, and Senior Fellow in the University of California, Berkeley. 

They are undertaking an ethnographic study of the Scottish Parliament, exploring how Parliament buildings shape the workings of the institution. The study involves asking how people shape the Parliamentary spaces, and how Parliamentary spaces affect the practices, modes of working and people’s interactions.



Dr Annalisa Savaresi is Senior Lecturer in Environmental Law at Stirling University.

Between September 2019 and June 2020, Annalisa will be supporting SPICe with expertise on environmental governance in Scotland and EU exit.  

Her first blog examines the state of play regarding environmental governance and EU exit, following the Scottish Government’s announcements concerning the adoption of interim measures.




Dr Anastasia Yang is a Senior Researcher at the University of Edinburgh, Centre for Sustainable Forests and Landscapes.

Between November 2019 and April 2020, Annie will be developing a SPICe research briefing providing a critical review of Scottish forestry policy in meeting multiple objectives.



Dr Hannah Bows is an Assistant Professor in Criminal Law at Durham Law School (Durham University) specialising in crimes (particularly violence and abuse) of older adults in the UK. Hannah is examining whether legal reform in relation to abuse of older adults is needed in Scotland, what these reforms might look like and the implications of any amendments or additions to existing laws




Dr Shaun Bevan is a Senior Lecturer in Quantitative Political Science at the University of Edinburgh. From September 2019 to May 2020, Shaun will be using text analysis and data visualisation techniques to study internal SPICe procedures and the extended use of textual data in SPICe outputs.

Previous SPICe Research Fellows

Dr Mark Livingston is a research fellow at the Urban Big Data Centre, leading on the Housing and Neighbourhoods workstream. Mark has over 16 years’ experience of neighbourhoods research, and over the last 3 years has been examining the use of Big Data sources to fill the gaps in the understanding of the Private Rented Sector. Mark produced a SPICe Briefing with colleagues at Glasgow University Private Renting Reforms How to Evidence the Impact of Legislation.

Dr Paulina Trevena was a researcher at the University of Glasgow at the time of her Fellowship. Paulina worked with SPICe to examine whether Scotland would benefit from introducing a social integration strategy as a way of attracting and retaining migrants post-Brexit.

Professor Hugh Bochel of the University of Lincoln started his fellowship  in March 2017. Hugh’s project looked at the diversity of committee witnesses in the Scottish Parliament and he recorded his finding in the SPICe Briefing Gender Representation on Public Boards (Scotland) Bill

Alison MacDonald of the University of Aberdeen, started her fellowship with The Scottish Parliament in April 2017.   Alison investigated opportunities for fisheries management following the UK’s departure from the European Union. 

Alex Wright was a PhD Candidate in International Public Health Policy at the University of Edinburgh at the time of her Fellowship. Alex’s research interests covered health policy, policy implementation, uses of evidence, and alcohol policy. Her Fellowship culminated in the SPICe Briefing What's so important about health policy implementation?

Arianna Andreangeli was a Senior Lecturer at the University of Edinburgh during her Fellowship. Arianna's research interests covered EU and domestic competition law.

Dr Kirsteen Shields was based at the School of Social Sciences, University of Dundee during her Fellowship. Kirsteen worked in SPICe from September to December 2016 and produced a SPICe Briefing on Human Rights in Scotland.

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