Did they write back?

A mandate divide in response to constituent casework in devolved bodies

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Alex Parsons, Rebecca Rumbul

Three devolved bodies in the UK (the Scottish Parliament, the National Assembly for Wales and the London Assembly) use Multi Member Proportional Representation electoral systems. These bodies have two groups of representatives, regional and constituency, elected through different methods. Using a survey of members of the public who contacted their representative, constituency representatives are shown to have a higher response rate across all three bodies, and this effect is isolatable from the role of being a government party. In Scotland, this effect is demonstrable when comparing the behaviour of the same people holding different roles, suggesting that individuals adapt their behaviour to the expectations of the role.


  1. Version of record
  2. Summary
  3. Introduction
  4. Constituency Service and casework
  5. Differences and conflict between different types of electoral mandate
  6. Complications in examining role mandate
    1. Contamination
    2. Different resources
    3. Overlap between mandate and government
  7. Hypotheses
  8. Methods
  9. Results
    1. Mean difference
    2. Regression analysis
    3. Self-selection
  10. Discussion
  11. Conclusion

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Cite this

Parsons, A. and Rumbul, R. (2018). Did they write back?. [online] mySociety Research. Available at: https://research.mysociety.org/publications/did-they-write-back [Accessed 27 Nov 2021].