The Constitution Unit


Dr Mark Sandford


Dr Mark Sandford was a Research Fellow with the Constitution Unit for five years, from 2000 to 2005, working mainly on regional government in England.  He 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's first degree was in Sociology, and in 2007 he was awarded a PhD.  He has written two books and many other publications.  His publications include:


  • The New Governance of the English Regions, Palgrave Macmillan, December 2005

  • The Northern Veto (edited), Manchester University Press, 2009

Journal articles

  • “England plus? Territory, identity and fiscal devolution in the UK”, with Federico Mor, British Politics, forthcoming 2019
  • “’Taking back control’, the UK’s constitutional narrative, and Schrodinger’s devolution”, with Cathy Gormley-Heenan, Parliamentary Affairs, forthcoming
  • “A reply on fiscal decentralisation”, Public Money and Management, forthcoming January 2019
  • “Territory, power and statecraft: understanding English devolution”, Regional Studies, with Matthew Flinders and Sarah Ayres, 2017
  • “Policy making front and back stage: assessing the implications for effectiveness and democracy”, British Journal of Politics and International Relations, with Sarah Ayres and Tessa Coombes, 2017.
  • “Growing pains: property taxation and revenue incentives in English local government”, with Federico Mor. Local Economy 32:5, 399-419, 2017
  • “The quiet return of equalisation alongside incentive in the English local government finance system”, 2017, Public Money and Management 37:4, 245-252
  • “Citizen participation and changing governance: cases of devolution in England”, Policy & Politics 45:2, 251-269, 2017, with Brenton Prosser, Alan Renwick, Arianna Giovannini, Gerry Stoker et al.
  • “Signing up to devolution: the prevalence of contract over governance in English devolution policy”, 2017, Regional & Federal Studies 27:1, 63-82
  • “Public services and local government: the end of the principle of ‘funding following duties’”. 2016. Local Government Studies 42 (4): 637-656
  •  “English Question or Union Question? Neither has easy answers”, with Robert Hazell, Political Quarterly 86:1, 2016, pp. 16-23

Book chapters

  • “Adapting to the fiscal landscape: local governments, revenue and taxation powers”, 20187, in ed Richard Kerley and Joyce Liddle, International Handbook of Local Government
  • “Parliament and Devolution”, with Cathy Gormley-Heenan, in ed. Louise Thompson and Cristina Leston-Bandeira, Exploring Parliament, 2018
  • “Cumbria, the North, and what makes a territory”, in ed. Richard Hayton, Arianna Giovannini and Craig Berry, The politics of the North: Governance, territory and identity in Northern England, University of Leeds, 2015