We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. You can change your cookie settings at any time. Otherwise, we'll assume you're OK to continue.

Durham University

Research & business

View Profile

Publication details for Professor Nick Vivyan

Vivyan, Nick & Wagner, Markus (2015). What do voters want from their local MP? Political Quarterly 86(1): 33-40.

Author(s) from Durham


This article summarises the findings from a study of what constituents want from their local Member of Parliament.1 We make use of a survey technique known as conjoint analysis, wherein we present a national sample of British voters with profiles of hypothetical MPs who vary randomly in their characteristics, activities and behaviour. We find that voters like MPs who are independent from the party line and who do not focus exclusively on national policy work. MPs' gender and experience matter far less to constituents. Overall, voters want a Parliament made up of strong-minded MPs who see their role as that of a constituency representative. This has important implications for parliamentary democracy in Britain.