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The Strathprints institutional repository is a digital archive of University of Strathclyde research outputs. Strathprints provides access to thousands of Open Access research papers by University of Strathclyde researchers, including those from the School of Psychological Sciences & Health - but also papers by researchers based within the Faculties of Science, Engineering, Humanities & Social Sciences, and from the Strathclyde Business School.

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The Barnett allocation mechanism : formula plus influence

Christie, Alex and Swales, J. Kim (2010) The Barnett allocation mechanism : formula plus influence. Regional Studies, 44 (6). pp. 761-775. ISSN 0034-3404

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Abstract

This paper seeks to explain why the operation of the Barnett formula has failed to generate convergence in the per capita public expenditure levels in the four countries of the United Kingdom. Using Scotland as an example, this paper argues that a 'formula plus influence' allocation mechanism has been in place. This offers improved flexibility, greater political integration, and increased information flows than would be available through either a straight bargaining or a formula process. While devolution has not changed the Barnett formula, it has altered the environment in which it operates and that this may well destabilize an otherwise secure system.