New research on attitudes to UK constitutional change released

16 March 2015 | 00:00–23:59

Dr Jan Eichhorn, Dr Daniel Kenealy, Richard Parry, Prof Lindsay Paterson and Alexandra Remond - all affiliated with the Academy of Government - share findings from ESRC funded research on attitudes to how the UK is governed.

The aim of this project is to engage with the fast-moving events after September 2014. Following the Scottish independence referendum a process of far-reaching constitutional change with a hectic timescale began that has been impacting the lead up to the May 2015 General Elections. The project examines what masses and elites in different parts of the UK think about the constitutional change process, what their preferences are, and whether they feel they have any influence.

The project consists of a set of elite interviews with high-profile politicians, civil servants and campaigners from across the UK as well as a mass opinion survey of people in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. A large sample allows us to present how views differ across the different parts of the UK (sample size 7479 in total, 4027 for England, 1630 for Scotland, 1211 for Wales, and 611 for Northern Ireland).

The results are the most comprehensive analysis of people’s views on the political process since September 2014 and in advance of the elections in May 2015. It allows us to show which groups of people feel most represented and which groups feel most alienated from this process. Comparing views from elites with those of the public will enable us to see where perceptions of those representing publics match actual views and where they may be more representative of particular groups of the population while others’ views may be less represented.

Click below to download our first set of briefings:

  • Briefing on Democratic Engagement and the Process of Constitutional Change
  • Briefing on Public Preferences and the Process of Constitutional Change
  • Briefing on Scotland and the Process of Constitutional Change
  • Briefing on the Smith Commission and the Process of Constitutional Change.

An overview of the project can be downloaded here.

Our research will be presented at engagement events in Edinburgh (18 March), London (23 March), Cardiff (24 March), and Belfast (26 March). Attendance at these events is open and free, but places are limited, so please sign up using the links below

In the coming days we will also publishing briefings specifically on attitudes in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland.

Full story on the Academy of Government website.