Research highlights

The research undertaken by members of the Centre for Democratic Engagement examines different forms of democratic engagement, participation and activism at local, national and global levels. Researchers at the Centre study and comment on current democratic challenges such as growing political polarisation, incivility, populism and disinformation, but we are also interested in potential opportunities and solutions, including new forms of citizen engagement, democratic reform of political parties, and innovative tools for online citizen engagement. In so doing, we seek to analyse and interpret the complex and contradictory developments that currently shape the terrain of democratic politics, in what for many is a turbulent and confusing political moment.

Projects

A selection of some of our current funded projects:

Petitioning and People Power in Twentieth-Century Britain
"Petitioning and People Power in Twentieth-Century Britain",  AHRC, 2020-2023. This project aims to explore how petitioning developed throughout the twentieth century, exploring the relationship between direct, participatory and representative democracy. CDE Co-Director Professor Cristina Leston-Bandeira is Co-Investigator on this project led by PI Professor Richard Huzzey (History, Durham University).
"A Global Comparative Ethnography of Parliaments, Politicians and People: representation, relationships and ruptures", European Research Council, 2019-24. This project will develop an ethnography of five parliaments (Brazil, Fiji, India, UK and US), with a focus on communication between institution and Members, and public(s). Professor Cristina Leston-Bandeira is Co-Investigator on this project led by PI Professor Emma Crewe (Anthropology, SOAS).
More
"Inclusivity and Engagement: children and the democratic process"
"Inclusivity and Engagement: children and the democratic process", ESRC WRDTP Collaborative PhD with the UK Parliament, 2020-24. This interdisciplinary project, between politics and education, explores whether institutional political engagement programmes aimed at young people promote inclusivity in the way children are introduced to democratic rights and processes. Professor Cristina Leston-Bandeira is Supervisor, together with Dr Paula Clarke (Education, University of Leeds).
"Prime Ministerial Leadership in Japan and the UK: Source of Power and Influence", ESRC. This project aims to address questions surrounding Prime Ministerial leadership in two leading parliamentary systems, the UK and Japan, that have often been overlooked in the comparative literature. It aims to explore the changing nature and role of UK and Japanese Prime Ministers since the turn of the millennium as each country has faced the challenges of the global financial crisis, domestic political and economic problems, and rising traditional and non-traditional security threats.  Dr Timothy Heppell is involved in the project to provide expertise on the UK Prime Minister. The main publication output from this project will be a special issue of Asian Journal of Comparative Politics, in which Dr Heppell will contribute two papers.
More

Blog, News and Events

View all Posts

CDE member Professor Kevin Theakston and Mark Gill, from King’s College London report on their findings of a survey of...

more

CDE member Ryan Swift analyses the consequences from the Batley and Spen by-election to Labour The Labour Party’s narrow victory...

more

Belén Alvarez Werth from the University of Queensland, Australia, and CDE member Daniel Valdenegro Ibarra  outline some of results to...

more

Most of the national coverage of the May 2021 elections focused on the successes and failures of the two main...

more

View all News

The CDE is very pleased to announce more success in the latest round of grants awarded: CDE member Dr Derek...

more

The Centre for Democratic Engagement is very proud to announce that its member Dr Viktoria Spaiser has been awarded one...

more

We’re very pleased to announce that CDE Associate Member Dr Shane Singh has had a new book published with Oxford...

more

CDE member, Miranda Duffy, was part of this year’s Be Curious festival held by the University of Leeds, where she...

more

View all Events

We are very pleased to announce a new events series dedicated to Designing for Democratic Engagement. The most important and...

more

This lecture will launch our events series on Designing Democratic Engagement. Michael Saward will speak of his latest book, Democratic...

more

Anti-racism campaigner Baroness Doreen Lawrence OBE is to give the latest public lecture in a University of Leeds series honouring...

more

This workshop will focus on the use of social media to support academic work. The CDE postgraduate workshops are informal...

more