Politics, the constitution and the independence movement in Scotland since devolution

Malcolm R. Petrie*

*Corresponding author for this work

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This article explores the course of Scottish politics since the establishment of the devolved parliament in 1999. It begins by considering the political roots of devolution before assessing the extent to which the electoral successes of the Scottish National Party (SNP) at the 2007 and 2011 devolved elections indicated a rise in support for Scottish independence. The focus then shifts to the political consequences of the 2014 independence referendum, in particular the relationship between the ‘Yes’ campaign and the SNP, as well as the changing social composition of the SNP's electoral support. The article concludes by examining the attempts of the SNP, and the wider independence movement, to secure a second independence referendum before reviewing recent political developments in Scotland.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)518-525
Number of pages8
JournalPolitical Quarterly
Issue number4
Early online date13 Sept 2023
Publication statusPublished - 7 Dec 2023


  • Scottish independence
  • Devolution
  • SNP
  • Referendum


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