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Summary: Religion and Local Government

Summary: Religion and Local Government

  • In 2016, the percentage of adults who agreed that their council provided high quality services was slightly higher for Other Religion (48%) compared to Christians(46%) and No Religion (43%).
  • A slightly higher proportion of those of Other Religion (34%) agreed that they could influence decisions affecting their local area compared to Christians (24%) and No Religion (22%).

Source: Scottish Household Survey 2016: Local Services (Last updated: September 2017)

  • In the public appointments rounds for 2016, 4.7% of applicants declared that they belong to a non-Christian religion or belief with 2.0% being appointed.

Source: Public Appointments in Scotland 2016: Diversity Analysis Report (Last updated: March 2017)

Note: A Public Appointment is an appointment to the board of any of the public bodies across Scotland - either as a member, or as the chair. The board's role is to provide leadership, direction and guidance, it is not involved in the day-to-day running of the public body.


Useful Links

Religion Page

Local Government Page


Publications and Outputs

Scottish Household Survey 2016 (September 2017) This report presents reliable and up-to-date information on the composition, characteristics and behaviour of Scottish households, both nationally and at a sub-national level. This includes analysis of age, deprivation, disability, ethnicity, gender, religion and sexual orientation


Public Appointments in Scotland 2016: Diversity Analysis Report (March 2017) A report providing an equality breakdown of public appointments, by disability, ethnicity, gender, religion and sexual orientation

Scottish Government Equality Outcomes: Religion and Belief Evidence Review (2013) A comprehensive review of available evidence in relation to religion



The Scottish Government website provides equalities breakdowns for the two public services National Indicators on Scotland Performs: Improve people's perceptions of the quality of public services and Improve the responsiveness of public services.

The Scottish Government website provides further information on accessing Scottish Household Survey data. Information about confidence intervals in the SHS can be found in Annex 3 of the annual report.

Annual Population Survey and Scottish Household Survey microdata is available (through a ‘special licence’ scheme) from the UK Data Archive.

External Links

External Links

Please note that you will leave the Scottish Government web site by clicking on any of the following links, and that the Scottish Government and its staff are not responsible for content external to this web site. The research below has been carried out independently of the Scottish Government and the findings do not necessarily represent the views of the Scottish Government or Scottish Ministers

External Publications and Outputs

Scotland's Councillors 2013 (Improvement Service, 2013) his report presents the findings of a survey of all councillors in Scotland following the May 2012 local elections. It includes age, ethnicity, gender and religion of councillors in Scotland

How Fair is Britain?: Report of EHRC first triennial review (EHRC, 2011) This Equality and Human Rights review aims to provide an authoritative compilation of the available evidence about equalities in England, Scotland and Wales against 40 indicators agreed by the Commission, the government and other key agencies. It brings together the facts about the experiences and outcomes in life of different individuals and groups. It draws on a range of sources including censuses, government surveys, academic work, and secondary analysis carried out especially for this Review.

External Research Organisations

Improvement Service - The Improvement Service works with councils and their partners to help improve the efficiency, quality and accountability of local public services in Scotland. It produces a small number of research publications each year, which have covered poverty and neighbourhood inequalities

Local Area Research and Intelligence Association - Develops and delivers a programme of activities which promote the further development and understanding of local government R&I in Scotland



Local Government