A Citizens’ Assembly for the Scottish Parliament (2017)


Establishing a Citizens’ Assembly as a second chamber to the Scottish Parliament would increase public trust in parliament and boost the confidence of legislators that there is broad public backing for their decisions. We propose selecting a random, representative sample of 73 members of the public to fulfil this role for at least one but preferably two-year terms (with a portion of them rotating out every six months). A twoyear trial is proposed whereby the Citizens’ Assembly is granted only advisory powers, after which a citizens’ review would propose which future powers the Assembly should have, and suggest improvements to the processes outlined below. Creating a Citizens’ Assembly in the Scottish Parliament would place Scotland at the forefront of democratic innovation and make it a global leader in citizen empowerment and engagement.

Published by the Sortition Foundation, newDemocracy and Common Weal.