A great post from Lesley Thomson (organiser of the successful ScotGovCamp back in July) summarising the Scottish Parliament’s second Communities Conference – Understanding and Influencing Your Parliament.

Hung on the back of the social media theme of ScotGovCamp, her account is actually of much wider interest for the advice it gives on how to approach and influence parliamentarians, advice that applies to all politicians, not just MSPs.

I especially liked the list of Don’ts from Labour MSP Susan Deacon.


  • bombard or overplay your hand
  • use the begging bowl approach (there’s no money!)
  • lobby the wrong people (she apparently expressed some surprise that there’s still a lot of confusion about which tier of representation to approach for a particular issue)
  • view the politician as an enemy
  • paint the politician into a corner.

Wise words.  My thanks to Lesley for the chance to use her summary.