Working to make government more effective

Hybrid event

General election: what change do we need?

Lord Mandelson, Lord Willetts, Kate McCann and Kelly Beaver joined us to discuss what change the country needs and wants.

Lord Willetts, Emma Norris and Lord Mandelson on stage at the IfG.
Lord Willetts, Emma Norris and Lord Mandelson (from left to right).

Watch the event

Listen to the event

Rishi Sunak has until December 2024 to call an election. While the formal starting pistol has yet to be fired, and may not be for at least a year, the long campaign has already begun. Both Sunak and Starmer are presenting themselves as the change candidate and the person to fix a country that – they both argue – is struggling to find its way.

Kicking off the Institute's General Election programme, this event reflected on the opening pitches of the two main parties at their recent conferences. It will ask what change the country, government and political system needs, what change the voters want, and whether either party has a plan to deliver it.

Joining us were:

  • Kelly Beaver, Chief Executive of Ipsos in the UK and Ireland
  • Lord Mandelson, Chairman of Global Counsel and former minister in the Blair and Brown governments
  • Kate McCann, Political Editor at Times Radio
  • Lord Willetts, President of the Resolution Foundation and former minister in the Major and Cameron governments

The event was chaired by Emma Norris, Deputy Director at the Institute for Government.

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

Related content

22 MAY 2024 Explainer

Calling a general election

Elections have to be held no more than five years apart, but the timing of elections are otherwise determined by the prime minister.