Pants on Fire? Campaign Promises and Democracy

Published: 10 September 2021

Event postponed

Event postponed - Details of new date will be published later in the semester

Speakers: Ms Kezia Dugdale, University of Glasgow
                 Dr Rory Costello, University of Limerick
                 Dr Heinz Brandenburg, University of Strathclyde
                 Chair: Dr Fraser McMillan, University of Glasgow

Political parties' election pledges play a central role in democratic election campaigns around the world. Yet these promises and their impacts are often misunderstood.  Why do parties make so many promises and what do they get out of it?  Do voters notice or care?  And, once elected, do parties keep or break them?  As major election pledges come to the fore of debate in the UK and Scotland, join our panel of experts to help make sense of this very public but often misunderstood democratic phenomenon.

Kezia Dugdale, former Scottish Labour leader and Director of the University's John Smith Centre, will pull back the curtain on the process of making and promoting promises. 
Dr. Rory Costello (University of Limerick), a world-leading expert in election pledge fulfilment, will provide his perspective on the growing research on the question.   
Dr. Heinz Brandenburg
 (University of Strathclyde), a noted scholar of public opinion and political communication, will discuss how voters and mass media respond to these promises. 

The panel will be chaired by Dr. Fraser McMillan (University of Glasgow), election pledge specialist and Scottish Election Study researcher, who is the co-founder and director of the new election promise tracking initiative.


First published: 10 September 2021