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General election: What role does polling play in shaping political strategy?

At this joint IfG and UKICE event, we explored the role of polling in the run up to a general election.

Panellists on stage at the Institute for Government

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Less than a year out from a general election, the significance of opinion polls in shaping public perception and political strategy is increasingly prominent. Political pundits, parties, journalists and members of the public look to opinion polls to give them a picture of what people are thinking about parties and politicians, their priorities and concerns, and how they might vote. Crucially, public opinion will inform political parties’ election strategies and the public’s voting decisions. 

But with multiple companies publishing a range of different polls, it can be a confusing landscape. To interpret polling results, understanding the methodologies behind opinion polls, including sampling, margin of error and the all-important question framing, is more important than ever. And for those trying to understand party strategies, it is essential to understand the role polling plays. 

To explore these questions and more, we were joined by an expert panel including:

  • Kelly Beaver MBE, Chief Executive of Ipsos in the UK and Ireland
  • Christabel Cooper, Director of Research at Labour Together
  • Rob Ford, Senior Fellow at UK in a Changing Europe
  • Tom Lubbock, Founding Partner of JL Partners

The event was chaired by Jill Rutter, Senior Fellow at the Institute for Government.

Follow us on X (formerly known as Twitter) @ifgevents and join the conversation using #IfGgeneralelection.

We would like to thank UKICE for kindly supporting this event. 

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