The Constitution Unit


Honorary Staff

The Unit has a number of honorary researchers who pursue their own research and contribute to and advise on our activities. They are not based at the Unit, but can be contacted via the Office Manager.

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Sir David Beamish

David's career in the House of Lords spanned more than 40 years. It hass included stints as private secretary to the Leader of the House of Lords and Chief Whip, and six years as Clerk of the Parliaments.

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Alan Cogbill

Alan is a retired senior civil servant with experience in the Home Office, Lord Chancellor's Department and Department for Constitutional Affairs. He is former head of the Wales Office and former Chief Executive of the Local Government Boundary Commission for England.

Paul Evans
Paul Evans

Paul worked as a Clerk in the House of Commons from 1981 to 2019, retiring as Clerk of Committees responsible for the staff of the House’s select committees.

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Oonagh Gay

Oonagh worked in the House of Commons Library for over 30 years, specialising in research on parliamentary and constitutional issues.

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Dr Andrew McDonald

Andrew was founding CEO of the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority from 2009-14 and Constitution Director at the Department for Constitutional Affairs from 2003-05.

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Lucinda Maer

Lucinda is Clerk of the Joint Committee on Human Rights. She was formerly the Head of the Parliament and Constitution Centre at the House of Commons Library. 

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Dr Robert Morris

Bob has previously worked as the Home Office Under Secretary responsible for Constitutional Affairs. He leads the Unit's work on the Church and State.

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Dr Patrick O'Brien

Patrick is a lecturer in Public Law at Oxford Brookes University and former researcher at the Unit on judicial independence. 

Akash Paun
Akash Paun

Akash is a fellow at the Institute for Government leading the Institute's work on devollution and relations between the regions. He is a former researcher at the Unit. 

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Dr Mark Sandford

Mark is worked as Research and Evaluation Manager for the Electoral Commission before joining the House of Commons Library in 2008, where he is Senior Researcher specialising in local and regional government. Mark was previously a Research Fellow with the Constitution Unit. 

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Brian Walker

Brian was the BBC's Political Editor Northern Ireland and a lobby correspondent and Editor of Political and Parliamentary Programmes at Westminster.

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Alan Whysall

Alan was involved in the Northen Ireland Peace process over the past 20 years as a senior British civil servant in the Northern Ireland Office. 

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Dr Benjamin Yong

Ben is a lecturer in Law at Hull University and former researcher at the Unit specialising in government.