THE refreshed prospectus on independence would be better written by campaigners than civil servants, a political scientist has argued.

Anthony Salamone, managing director of political analysis firm European Merchants, said the papers which had been published so far were “vague” and “non-committal”.

At an event in Edinburgh, he suggested the documents would have been “less bland” if they had been written by a campaign body or the party.

The Scottish Government has so far published three papers outlining its vision for independence, covering topics including making the case for leaving the UK by using comparisons with other European countries and arguments around renewing democracy.

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The most recent document, unveiled by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon last month, outlined the currency and economic plans for an independent Scotland.

It is understood a team of 22 civil servants have been tasked with drawing up the prospectus, with further papers expected in the coming months.

Salamone said while the series was “far from complete”, there was plenty of material on which to assess the “current state of the revised case for independence”.

He said the papers were often “vague and non-committal”, arguing this was partly due to “political decisions”.

But he added: “It could also reflect in part that civil servants – with ministers and special advisers obviously involved - have written these papers.

“Pros and cons come with publishing the prospectus through the Scottish Government, instead of a political party or a campaign body.”

Salamone said this included that the papers were “blander” than otherwise might have been.

He added: “In my assessment, it would be better for proposals to be written and published by proponents of independence, not outsourced to civil servants whose function is to deliver public policy in the present.”

However Salamone acknowledged there were also “inherent challenges” in producing such a prospectus, as no government could promise with certainty what a state might look like in the future.

He pointed out that the Government could change after independence, which could render any current proposals obsolete.

“In any independence referendum, whether it be 2014 or in the future, voters must decide based on incomplete information, that is the nature of constitutional change,” he added.

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But he argued the prospectus could focus more on answering major questions on independence, rather than attempting to be a “neutral provider of information”.

“This Government wants Scotland to become an independent state and the entire purpose of this prospectus is to further that objective,” he said.

“It would make far more sense for the Scottish Government to acknowledge those realities and present a prospectus which is open about them and which provides its own substantive proposals."

He added: “For instance, on EU membership, we do not require the Scottish Government to tell us how joining the EU works … such information can certainly be useful to voters, but government does not need to provide it, and providing it is not a substitute for its own proposals.

“Indeed we should expect the Government to tell us instead how it proposes to undertake EU accession.”