‘Public Foreplay’ or Programmes for Government? The Content of the 2015 Party Manifestos

Nicholas Allen, Judith Bara

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This article analyses the content of the 2015 British General Election manifestos using manually derived Manifesto Project estimates and computer-assisted text analysis (CATA). It analyses the parties’ policy emphases, investigates their ideological positioning and movement, and further compares their policy agendas with voters’ concerns. It finds the three main parties moved slightly leftwards but continued to agree on the broad thrust of economic policy. It also finds that, while the economy dominated the manifestos, there was considerable differentiation in respect of other issues. Finally, the parties appeared to downplay the issue of immigration despite its importance to the public.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-21
Number of pages21
JournalParliamentary Affairs
Issue number1
Early online date31 May 2016
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2017

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