Events

Held in contempt: What's wrong with the House of Commons

Hosted by the Department of Government

Wolfson Theatre, New Academic Building and Zoom Webinar

Speaker

Dr Hannah White

Dr Hannah White

Chair

Professor Tony Travers

Professor Tony Travers

The House of Commons is increasingly held in contempt by the British public. From attending parties during the Covid-19 lockdown to taking payment for lobbying, MPs undermine their credibility by acting as if the rules they set for others should not apply to them.

Still far from representative of the country they govern from the ancient and crumbling Palace of Westminster, MPs appear detached from the lives led by their constituents - conducting their business according to rules and procedures that have become too complex for many of them to understand. In this timely book, Hannah White offers a perceptive critique of the shortcomings of the House of Commons, arguing that the reputation of the Commons is in a downward spiral - compounded by government attempts to side-line parliament during Brexit and the coronavirus pandemic. At a time of populist challenge to representative democracy, this book is an essential rallying cry for MPs to reform the House of Commons - equipping it to fulfil its important role as a cornerstone of our democracy - or see it fade into irrelevance.

Meet our speakers and chair

Hannah White OBE (@DrHannahWhite) is Deputy Director of the Institute for Government. She has extensive knowledge of Westminster and Whitehall based on over a decade of experience in parliament and the civil service. 

Tony Travers is Professor in Practice in the Department of Government, LSE. His key research interests include local and regional government, elections and public service reform. 

Twitter Hashtag for this event: #LSECommons

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