To participate effectively in the work of a select committee, you need to set aside time for at least one weekly meeting of probably two to three hours. You will also require reading time. A substantial number of papers will be circulated by committee staff, including, among other things:
- written evidence submissions
- briefs containing suggested questions for public evidence sessions
- oral evidence transcripts
- correspondence from ministers and others
- draft committee reports and suggested amendments to them
- government responses to those reports
Calculating the time required each week is difficult as committees’ work programmes ebb and flow, but a minimum commitment of the equivalent of a standard working day each week is common. On many committees the workload is greater.