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13:00 - 14:30 15 May 2018

Regulating debate in elections and referendums


Council Room | Rubin Building (link Map)
29–30 Tavistock Square | London | WC1 | United Kingdom

Open to: Alumni | Public | Academic | Student
Admission: Free
Ticketing: Pre-booking essential

Speaker information

Dr Alan Renwick, Deputy Director, UCL Constitution Unit
Dr Jane Suiter, Director, Institute for Future Media and Journalism
Lord (George) Foulkes of Cumnock, Labour peer
Prof Robert Hazell (Chair), Professor of Government and the Constitution, UCL Constitution Unit

There is wide concern about the quality of debate that precedes elections and referendums. Many voters feel they cannot find reliable information on the options before them. But what can be done to improve the situation? The Constitution Unit is undertaking research, funded by the McDougall Trust, to answer this question.

This seminar aims to explore some of the ideas and hear how this issue is tackled in other countries. Should there be a truth commission that could call out campaigners who make false claims? Should there be public information provision and, if so, what should it contain? Could NGOs do more to improve the information available? Can citizens be involved more directly in debates?

The seminar will draw on evidence from elections and referendums in the UK and around the world. It will focus particularly on the innovative approach to referendum campaigning that is adopted in Ireland, where a major referendum on the liberalisation of abortion law takes place on 25 May.


Rachel Cronkshaw
+44 (0) 20 7679 4977 | r.cronkshaw@ucl.ac.uk


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