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Politics and International Relations (PIR): People


Marc Geddes

Marc Geddes
Dr Marc Geddes
Senior Lecturer in Politics
Office B.09 19 George Square Edinburgh UK EH8 9LD
+44 (0) 131 651 3784
Research Interests
British politics, parliamentary studies, UK Parliament, interpretive political science, evidence in politics, ethnography, democracy

Guidance and Feedback Hours

  • Wednesdays, 2pm-6pm - please schedule via MS Bookings:

My research

My research is about the role of parliaments and their place in democratic politics. Specifically, I'm interested in:

  • How politicians interpret and enact their role, especially with respect to scrutinising government, and how this affects democratic politics;
  • The role of knowledge claims in politics, especially how their use affects evidence-informed policy-making; and,
  • The way we can effectively study political phenomena, particularly engaging with debates on interpretive political science.


Most recently, I have completed a four-year ESRC project entitled Interpreting Parliamentary Scrutiny that explores a lot of these issues, and focused predominantly on the UK Parliament. This has now been published as a book, about which you can find out more here.

My love for parliaments extends well beyond the UK - keep abreast by following #lovinglegislatures. I am also generally interested in contemporary challenges to democracy (in the UK and further afield).

As well as my research and teaching role in Politics and International Relations, I am Co-Director of the Centre for Science, Knowledge and Policy (SKAPE), and the Associate Director for Research, Knowledge Exchange and Impact at the School of Social and Political Science.

Selected publications

For enquiries about recent conference papers and current work-in-progress, please contact me directly.


(2020) Dramas at Westminster: Select Committees and the Quest for Accountability. Manchester: Manchester University Press.

This book was reviewed for LSE Review of Books by Dr Ben Worthy (Birkbeck) and for Representation by Dr Tom Caygill (Newcastle).


(2020) 'Explaining Change in Legislatures: Dilemmas of managerial reform in the UK House of Commons'. Political Studies. Early View. Co-author: A. Meakin.

(2020) 'The webs of belief around 'evidence' in legislatures: The case of select committees in the UK House of Commons'. Public Administration. Early View.

(2020) 'Opening up evidence-based policy: exploring citizen and service user engagement', Evidence & Policy 16:2, pp.199-208. Co-authors: E. Stewart, J. Smith-Merry and J. Bandola-Gill.

This article is the editorial of a fully open access guest-edited special issue of Evidence & Policy by E. Stewart, J. Smith-Merry and M. Geddes.

(2020) 'Governing under Pressure? The Mental Wellbeing of Politicians', Parliamentary Affairs 73:2, pp253-73. Co-authors: J. Weinberg, A. Weinberg, M. Flinders and R. Kwiatkowski.

(2019) 'Performing Scrutiny along the Committee Corridor of the UK House of Commons', Parliamentary Affairs 72:4, pp.821-40.

(2019) 'The Explanatory Potential of 'Dilemmas': Bridging practices and power to understand political change in interpretive political science', Political Studies Review 17:3, pp.239-54.

(2018) 'Committee Hearings of the UK Parliament: Who gives evidence and does this matter?', Parliamentary Affairs 71:2, pp.283-304.

(2018) 'A Recipe for Impact? Exploring knowledge requirements in the UK Parliament and beyond', Evidence and Policy 14:2, pp.259-76. Co-authors: K. Dommett and B. Prosser.

(2014) ‘The Silent Revolution: A political history of the politics of patronage and reform’, Contemporary British History 28:1, pp.24-55. Co-author: M. Flinders.

Book chapters

(2020) ‘Democracy: Problems and challenges, opportunities and design’, in K. Larres and R. Wittlinger (eds.) Understanding Global Politics: Actors and themes in international affairs, London: Routledge. Co-author: M. Flinders.

(2018) ‘Towards an Interpretive Parliamentary Studies’, in J. Brichzin, D. Krichewsky, L. Ringel and J. Schank (eds.) The Sociology of Parliaments. Wiesbaden: Springer VS. Co-author: R.A.W. Rhodes.

(2018) ‘Supporting Members and Peers’, in C. Leston-Bandeira and L. Thompson (eds.) Exploring Parliament, Oxford: Oxford University Press. Co-author: J. Mulley.

Reports and policy engagement

(2020) Evaluating Academic Engagement with UK Legislatures: Exchanging knowledge on knowledge exchange. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University. Co-author: D. Beswick.

We have disseminated our findings through blogs and articles:

(2019) 'The effectiveness and influence of the select committee system', written submission to the House of Commons Liaison Committee. Inquiry details here.

(2018) 'Establishing select committees in a new parliament', written submission to the House of Commons Procedure Committee. Inquiry details here.

(2017) 'Enhancing Scrutiny in the Scottish Parliament', written submission to Commission on Parliamentary Reform (final report here). Co-author: J. Mitchell.

(2016A Recipe for Parliamentary Impact? An academic guide to effective engagement. Sheffield: Sheffield Solutions Policy Briefing. Co-authors: K. Dommett and B. Prosser.

Blogs and public engagement 

(2019) 'A Conservative majority means parliamentary scrutiny is in danger of being weakened', Democratic Audit, and PSA Parliaments Group blog.

(2019) 'The Shadow of John Bercow', UK in a Changing Europe Blog.

(2017) 'A Place Where MPs Try To Shine', commissioned article for Donmar Theatre production 'Committee... (A New Musical)'. More information here.

(2017) 'New parliament offers new opportunities for impact', Research Professional.

My teaching responsibilities

I contribute to a range of courses, but my principal teaching commitments at the moment include:

  • Course Organiser, Parliamentary Studies
  • Course Organiser, Government and Politics of the UK (Parliamentary Placement Programme)
  • Course Organiser, Introduction to British Politics

In addition to these courses, I am also the International Exchange and JYA Coordinator for Politics and International Relations. You can find out more about going abroad as part of your degree if you click here.


2016, PhD in Politics (Sheffield)

2012, MA in Politics with Research Methods (Sheffield)

2011, BA in History and Politics (Sheffield)

Other professional involvement

My other activities include the following:

  • Associate Fellow, Sir Bernard Crick Centre for the Public Understanding of Politics, Department of Politics, University of Sheffield. Find out more here.
  • Member, Study of Parliament Group (registered charity no.  251208).
  • Member, Political Studies Association. Find out more here.
  • Member, American Political Science Association.
  • Editorial Board Member, The Journal of Legislative Studies.

Topics interested in supervising

I would be interested in supervising PhD applicants within British politics, legislative studies, governance issues and/or those interested in adopting interpretive approaches to political science.

If you are interested in being supervised by Marc Geddes, please see the links below for more information:

PhD in Politics; MSc (R) Politics