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The Narcissism of Small Differences: Scotland and Westminster

Mitchell, J. (2009) The Narcissism of Small Differences: Scotland and Westminster. Parliamentary Affairs, 63 (1). pp. 98-116.

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Abstract

Apart from issues of representation, the new Scottish Parliament resembles Westminster more than its founders had hoped. It was influenced by the same reform agenda that has animated debates on reform of the Commons. The most significant changes from the Westminster model are evident in the voting system, though less than anticipated. Westminster continued to reform itself, albeit in limited ways, after 1997 while Holyrood has rarely addressed some of the same issues. Significant changes appear more likely at the outset of an institution's establishment than after it has come into being when practices, styles and interests are established and reform relies on either an exogenous shock or slow, incremental change