Private schools, rugger and one of the boys

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle


It is a questionable assumption that financially modest provisions of hospitality are necessarily not a potential source of influence. Young et al (2017) argue the financial system is governed not only by formal rules, but also by social relationships that pervade every strata of society. They discovered correlational evidence that the social distance of an organisation to a key regulator in the US was related to how frequently it adopted advocacy behaviour (see Mauss, 1925/2016).
In this article I take up these insights and claims applying it to the Scottish Parliament’s system of data disclosure by MSPs. This article’s official Parliamentary disclosure data concerns sums in the region of around £500-£2000, costs arising from the provision of sporting match tickets and associated convivial hospitality on the day of the event. The Code of Conduct set by the legal authority invested in Parliament (Scottish Parliament Act 2006) prescribes a set of principles and standards for Members of the Scottish Parliament in order to support their accountability and openness to the public. Categories of registerable interest the MSPs must respect include financial and various kinds of renumeration that include employments, paid advocacy, partnerships, directorships, expenses and gifts. Gifts include tangible items such as hospitality or tickets to sporting or cultural events. Besides rugby match tickets I also utilise other sporting event declared gifts.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages3
No.March-April Online Supplement
Specialist publicationScottish Left Review
PublisherThe Jimmy Reid Foundation
Publication statusPublished - 18 Apr 2023


  • privilege
  • networks
  • gifting
  • politics
  • schooling


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