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Taking Psychology to Holyrood

11th June 2018

This is blog on hosting an exhibition in the Scottish Parliament, looking for help to host your own? Get in touch | Public Affairs Scotland

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of accompanying the British Psychological Society (BPS) quite literally down the corridors of power, spending a week camped out in the Members’ Lobby of the Scottish Parliament.

No, we hadn’t gone rogue with a tent and placards, we’d secured a highly sought-after slot in Holyrood’s jam-packed exhibition calendar.

The exhibition slots are testament to the Parliament’s commitment to openness, with two organisations a week setting up shop in the Members’ and Garden Lobbies.

These prime locations present ample opportunity to meet and greet MSPs, researchers and other staff.

Very much a passing trade, this engagement is all about getting your key messages across quickly, strengthening existing relationships, rekindling old connections and letting as many new people as possible know, “Hey! We exist!”

When I first joined Pagoda and started working with BPS, I had a very vague notion of Psychology and the areas it touches.

It is a subject that’s so much broader than many of us might assume.

The society has research, evidence and perspectives on everything from reducing energy consumption and screen use to getting more active and achieving that elusive, balanced diet.

After a week on the stand, I’m sure many more of our MSPs now know that too.

That’s what exhibiting at Parliament is all about – profile-raising and letting policy makers know how you can help inform, educate, and assist across many areas.

Over the course of the week, we engaged with many MSPs, a few ministers, key members of relevant committees and cross-party groups and last but not least, we managed a quick introduction to the First Minister herself.

And so this is an appreciation post for the Scottish Parliament, its ease of access, and the willingness to engage, shown by many of our MSPs.

However, not all the same positive words can be said for the many, many lobbying register returns triggered from such a busy and rewarding week!

Pagoda is a leading public affairs agency which has a team of consultants who understand how to help you work with legislators, influencers and stakeholders.  If you are interested in knowing more about our skilled public affairs team or how we can help you with planning developments, public consultation or political communications, please do get in touch