After the same-sex marriage vote, what next? Public opinion and policy responsiveness

We care about public opinion and policy congruency for normative and practical reasons. For reasons of values, if nothing else, some form of policy representation is necessary for democratic government. However, this link… Continue reading

Policy before party: women and political collaboration

In 2006, four women senators from different parties made history when they worked together across party lines to overturn the ministerial veto on medical abortion drug RU486. What led these women to collaborate… Continue reading

Australian Policy Agendas Over Time

Throughout Labor’s final term in office, the casual observer might easily have concluded that most of the government’s attention was taken up by leadership crises. Yet, despite the drama, parliament under Julia Gillard… Continue reading

The logic of policy-motivated parties

Representative democracy is party democracy. Parties helped to create and continue to shape our democratic institutions, dominating the formation of governments and (most) executive offices around the world. The policies they adopt when… Continue reading

A Jacksonian Curse? Defying the Democratic ‘Lock’ on the Electoral College

President Donald Trump’s tenure in the Oval Office has extended past six months, but his surprise electoral victory and the ongoing saga of his presidency ensures the arcane electoral college system remains at… Continue reading

Ongoing problems within the Greens is a warning to all parties

The events of the past fortnight have rocked the Australian Greens in a way they have not been at any point since their entry into the Australian political scene. The dual episodes of… Continue reading

Multicultural Integration Policy: The Case for a Citizenship Test

­Is cultural and linguistic diversity a ‘threat’ to national identity? Recent debates over the Commonwealth Government’s proposed citizenship overhaul have drawn political battlelines across the process for migrant integration and what it means… Continue reading

Election Nerds: The Manchurian participants down under and the UK election (again)

In which the Nerds consider the recent media coverage of Chinese influence on Australian politics, and the outcome of the 2017 – completely unnecessary – UK national election. Your hosts: Dr Stewart Jackson,… Continue reading

Strange Bedfellows? The ideological migration of UKIP voters to Labour in the 2017 General Election

At 10pm on Thursday 8 June, British voters faced yet another political shock. Despite an overwhelming 21 percent lead (YouGov), the Conservatives failed to win enough seats to form a majority government. As… Continue reading

Representation by numbers: A statistical approach to political biography

The inner workings of democratic politics are often communicated through the narrative literary device – placing character, intrigue and dramatic flourish at the centre of political investigation. Political biography makes democratic processes fascinating… Continue reading