Daniel Kenealy
Dr Daniel Kenealy
Social Policy School of Social and Political Science
University of Edinburgh
2.01 21 George Square Edinburgh UK EH8 9LD
+44 (0) 131 650 4080
UK Government Whitehall Intergovernmental relations Machinery of government Devolution and UK constitution Government and governance in Scotland Sub-state diplomacy and external relations Interpretive public administration


From Friday 21 September to Friday 30 November I will hold weekly open office hours between 1pm and 3pm. No appointment is required for meetings during these hours although advance contact by email is often useful. Outside of these hours, please email me to schedule a meeting.


After completing my PhD in International Relations at the University of Edinburgh in 2012 I joined the School, initially as a Teaching Fellow in Politics & International Relations. I joined the Social Policy subject area in April 2015.


My current research focuses on the government and governance of the UK - the machinery, structure and processes of government. I work at the intersection of public administration, organisational studies, and political history. I am interested in exploring how different traditions, stories and narratives about government and governance are used in everyday settings by policy actors, as revealed through interviews, ethnography and the analysis of historical government documents. Topically, I am working on:

  • Intergovernmental relations in the devolved UK, how they can be understood as manifestations of Whitehall practices, beliefs and traditions, and how that is creating significant dilemmas for the governance of the UK.
  • The interaction between Whitehall and local government traditions, practices and beliefs in the context of the establishment of English City-region Metro Mayors and Combined Authorities.
  • The government and governance of Scotland since devolution in 1999, with an emphasis on the development of the Scottish Executive (which became the Scottish Government), the working relations between the Scottish Government and local governments, Scotland's external affairs policy, and devolution finance.

Outside of my core research I am interested in political biography and in depictions of politics, government and public administration in fiction, particularly on television and in novels and theatre.


My earlier research explored the history of European integration and the UK's constitutional politics before, during and after Scotland's 2014 independence referendum. I have published in journals including West European Politics, Regional and Federal Studies, Journal of European Integration, Millenium, European Security, European Law Journal, British Politics and Diplomacy and Statecraft.

I have presented my research at the University of Montreal, the Woodrow Wilson Center for International Scholars, Georgetown University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the European Policy Centre in Brussels, and Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik in Berlin. I have served as expert adviser to the Scottish Parliament's European and External Relations Committee and have presented oral evidence to that committee on several occasions as well as to the House of Commons' Scottish Affairs Committee.


In the 2018-2019 academic year:

  • Convener and lecturer, 'Social Policy and Society' (Undergraduate)
  • Convener and lecturer, 'Understanding Public Policy' (Undergraduate)
  • Convener, 'Social Policy MA Dissertation' (Undergraduate)
  • Convener, 'Government, Policy & Society MA Dissertation' (Undergraduate)
  • Personal tutor, 4th year Social Policy students