Category Archive: research spotlight

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

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

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

Why the mistrust? How elite and popular perceptions of electoral integrity diverge in Australia

Many commentators lamented the ‘really long, really boring’ election campaign leading up to the Australian federal election of 2 July 2016. But despite complaints, the contest transformed into a nail-biting affair. The closeness… Continue reading

Time for debate over party regulation?

The current inquiry by the federal parliament’s Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters (JCSEM) into the conduct of the 2016 federal election should be an opportunity for real debate over party regulation.  Despite… Continue reading

Increasingly friendly? Radical Right Populist Parties and the Centre-Right

How should mainstream centre-right parties treat radical right populists? Should they consider them as potential coalition partners when they represent a sizeable section of voters or should they always ostracise them on the… Continue reading

When the Glass Ceiling is made of Concrete: Women’s Political Participation in South Asia

As the first female US presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton had brought about wide anticipation that a woman President in the world’s most powerful democracy was within reach. Much was written about the expected… Continue reading

Beyond the bubble: How leaders connect constructively to diverse publics

Today political leaders around the globe are increasingly seeking direct input from affected publics. This is especially the case for elected officials engaged in local and regional politics where citizen engagement tends to… Continue reading

Measuring Fieldwork: Data-driven Campaigning in the 2016 Election

Data-driven fieldwork is rapidly emerging as a significant form of election campaigning in Australia. The recent double dissolution campaign set a new high water mark, with no fewer than six separate fieldwork campaigns… Continue reading