Swing Seat Spotlight: Election 2017 | BritainThinks/The Guardian

June 08, 2017

BritainThinks is collaborating with the Guardian on a project to see the 2017 General Election through voters' eyes. 

Using an innovative combination of online research methods and more traditional face-to-face research approaches, we are aiming to get under the skin of undecided voters in six key constituencies – Glasgow East, Wells, Birmingham Erdington, Harrow West, Cambridge and Hartlepool.

While the main party strategists’ daily struggle will be to impose their carefully honed campaign grids on to the media cycle, we will try to understand how much they are noticing and what, if anything, actually persuades. We’ll explore citizens’ direct experiences of democracy in a world of micro-targeting and social media 'echo chambers'. How is the election impacting on their day-to-day lives? What role does old-fashioned door-knocking have relative to Facebook advertisements? And how much do people really care about this (for many) second election in a month and third major national vote in three years?

We will also be trying to understand the particular local battles in each of the six constituencies, a critical part of any first-past-the-post election. For example, we’ll see whether Labour are threatened by the Conservatives in Birmingham, Harrow West and (even) Hartlepool.  We’ll test the Liberal Democrats' attempts to win back Wells in the South-West from the Conservatives. We'll look at the Labour v Lib Dem battle in Cambridge. And we'll gauge whether the SNP seat of Glasgow East is under threat from the resurgent Scottish Tories.

You can access The Guardian's coverage here. We'll be posting regular insight updates from the six constituencies throughout the campaign. You can access the final report below:

Swing Seat Spotlight Constituency Update 070617 Final PDF