A new website is setting out to engage young people in the UK EU referendum, following research which shows some 81 per cent of 12-to-24 year olds feel that they don’t know enough about the EU and how it affects their everyday lives.
The 2014 study completed by Dr Darren Sharpe of the University of East London (UEL) shows that only 7 per cent feel that they know ‘a lot’ about the EU, and just 12% feel that the EU impacts on their lives ‘very much’.
The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)-funded site, ‘Me & EU’, aims to give young voters the key, relevant information which will aid and support them in making a decision in the run up to the referendum.
As the final stages of the 2015 general election campaign unfold, it looks like we could end up with a multi-party coalition of at least three – and possibly more – parties, writes Professor Matt Henn. This would be unprecedented in the modern era of British politics.
But a shadow falls over the election in the form of voter abstention by the British public. Declining electoral participation rates have been a feature of recent general elections, with people voting in far fewer numbers than in previous decades. In Britain, nowhere is the divide between citizens and mainstream democratic politics and the state more apparent than among today’s young people.
A major concern of national politicians is that young people seem increasingly reluctant to vote in elections. Only 44% of registered 18 to 24-year-olds participated at the general election in 2010, remaining well below youth election turnout rates recorded during the 1980s and 1990s, and significantly less than their older contemporaries. Continue reading
Whether people will vote at all is a very open question
With less than a month to go until polling day, the UK General Election promises to be the most unpredictable – and dare we whisper, exciting? – contest in the modern era. If the opinion polls are anything to go by, then it seems increasingly unlikely that any two parties will be able to muster sufficient votes and seats to form a majority two-party coalition government on May 7th. The prospect of a three- or four-party coalition government is therefore a very real one.
Let’s consider the evidence. Continue reading