DueDil has teamed up with investigative journalist Martin Williams to shed light on the financial interests of British politicians in a new book.
DueDil supplied Mr Williams with information that helped show the company directorships held by British politicians – whether or not they are publicly declared on the official Register of Members’ Financial Interests.
The findings are revealed in a new book, “Parliament Ltd: A journey to the dark heart of British politics”, published May 26 by Hodder & Stoughton.
How we did it
In order to understand the extent of politicians’ corporate holdings, Mr. Williams – who has written for the Guardian and Private Eye – asked DueDil to compile a dataset listing every UK company directed by an MP or Member of the House of Lords.
DueDil compiled the information through its comprehensive data-matching expertise. Our data scientists used the DueDil tool to cross-reference specific names – including different spellings and aliases – with known UK company directors, producing an accurate list of companies linked to politicians.
As a result, DueDil identified nearly 2,800 active directorships held by Parliamentarians in the House of Commons and House of Lords, relating to a total of 2,500 companies – responsible for employing millions of people in the UK.
An analysis of the data by Mr. Williams showed that around 43% of the directorships discovered by DueDil had not been fully declared. Another 6% were only partially declared, and another 3% were declared with major errors, such as incorrect spelling of company names.
Mr. Williams said: “Until now, it has been virtually impossible to show the extent to which MPs have power over the UK economy. DueDil’s analysis means that for the first time, a clear picture of the influence held by politicians can be revealed – enabling us to understand exactly what their interests are and who they do business with. And thanks to companies like DueDil, politics will gradually be dragged into the twenty-first century, with more transparency and open data.”
To discover information about the companies you care about – and the people who run them – get started with DueDil today.