Latest Blog Posts

Job done

Posted on: 29 September 2014

As with many other things in this life, the recent independence referendum relied heavily on the efficiency and competency of local government.

Unexpected item

Posted on: 29 September 2014

Monetary policy decision becoming 'more balanced'

The grass is greener, honest

Posted on: 26 September 2014

The revolution didn’t happen. The voters took a walk up to the line, but in the end didn’t step over it.

Talking point: Ideas vacuum

Posted on: 26 September 2014

Given criticism of Tristram Hunt by teaching unions recently for ‘a lack of ideas’, it is surprising the shadow education secretary didn’t come out fighting at the Labour conference last week.

Talking Point: A fairer outcome

Posted on: 17 September 2014

Unsurprisingly, the criminal justice system – given its already devolved nature – did not prove nearly as prominent in the referendum campaign as other aspects of public policy.

Brave new world

Posted on: 17 September 2014

This question has allowed us all to think outside the box and imagine that anything is possible

Centre Stage

Posted on: 16 September 2014

Despite the intense spotlight upon it the NHS has simply been getting on with business as usual

A referendum on currency union

Posted on: 15 September 2014

Will the UK's appetite for referenda be whetted by Scotland’s experience?

Talking Point: First steps

Posted on: 12 September 2014

By sheer coincidence, as I stepped into the education brief for Holyrood, my daughter started her school career.

Talking point: Suck it up

Posted on: 12 September 2014

Efficiency requirements will deliver as much as a third of the EU’s energy-saving target for 2020

Think of the children

Posted on: 28 August 2014

The power of film

Talking point: Falling out

Posted on: 20 August 2014

When I took on the health portfolio in September, I was surprised by how much cross-party agreement there was in health beyond the shouting of the debating chamber. As the Healt

Artistic licence

Posted on: 11 August 2014

Kate Shannon on the Big Noise project

Another Trident debate

Posted on: 7 August 2014

By far one of the most emotive argument

Talking point: Two steps back

Posted on: 5 August 2014

It is a sobering thought that all groundbreaking legislation, no matter how many people may have demonstrated or marched in support of it, can be repealed.

Secret agreement to rule the waves

Posted on: 30 July 2014

Barack Obama announced to congress the 1958 UK-US Mutual Defence Agreement (MDA) had been updated for the next 10 years.

An academic question

Posted on: 29 July 2014

With the referendum just weeks away the future of research funding for Scotland’s universities has become yet another area of dispute between the two campaigns.

Letting the numbers speak for themselves

Posted on: 25 July 2014

In the bid for cleaner, greener energy,

Another revolving door

Posted on: 15 July 2014

During the 2010 election campaign I int

Wee fish, big pond

Posted on: 10 July 2014

Israel says militants have fired more than 365 rockets from Gaza since Tuesday and it has attacked about 780 targets over the same time.

Talking Point: Mind your language

Posted on: 3 July 2014

Trawl the internet long enough, or in fact ask enough people the same question, however misinformed, and you will get the answer you want.

Talking point: Spinning a car crash

Posted on: 3 July 2014

Ed Miliband used his speech today in Edinburgh to back up Johann Lamont’s attack on the SNP over the NHS during yesterday’s First Minister’s Questions.

Rural Scotland - yes or no?

Posted on: 3 July 2014

Rural Scotland is once again the battleground for the independence debate.

Talking Point: Beyond 2020

Posted on: 3 July 2014

It might be a slightly terrifying thought but 2020, the D-Day for what seems like all government targets, is only six years away.

Our place in the world

Posted on: 3 July 2014

Major events like the Commonwealth Games that pull people in from all over the globe can make

Bin the bags

Posted on: 3 July 2014

This year Scotland might start to win the war against the pesky carrier bag.

Talking point: Crossing lines

Posted on: 3 July 2014

Berwick-upon-Tweed MP Sir Allan Beith has tabled questions in the Commons on the issue of cross-border care, after concerns were expressed at his local Liberal Democrats’ branch about ‘recent chang

Get in the great outdoors

Posted on: 3 July 2014

The picture of a happy mother and son could have been any family snap.

Tree of life

Posted on: 3 July 2014

When I was in primary school I climbed one of the biggest trees in the known world. It was around five kilometres tall, looming over the surrounding landscape.

Talking Point: Money, money, money

Posted on: 3 July 2014

To paraphrase Jessie J – not something you’ll find me doing often