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Criminology / Forensics - Politics - 04.05.2021
Security and violent crime cannot be an argument against humane refugee policies - new study
New research from international academics challenges a myth that progressive policies towards asylum seekers pose a threat to domestic security. Last updated on Tuesday 4 May 2021 Ahead of US President Joe Biden's plan later this month to lift the country's historically low cap on asylum seekers, a new political study finds that liberal, progressive refugee policies do not pose domestic security challenges for states.

Politics - 15.01.2021
Reform public procurement to protect aid money, urges major new anti-corruption study
The biggest study of its kind has proven the link between local political context and the risk that humanitarian aid money is lost to corruption. The study also provides reassurance that the controls that donors may insist upon can be effective at preventing money going astray. The paper " Controlling Corruption in Development Aid: new evidence from contract-level data? is published in the Studies in Comparative International Development journal.

Religions - Politics - 07.12.2020
2021 Northern Ireland census unlikely to clarify prospects of Irish unity
Expectations are rising that the 2021 Northern Ireland census may act as a trigger for a referendum on Irish unification, but 'new' census questions on religious background and national identity are likely to shape the debate about Northern Ireland's constitutional future, a new study reveals. While 'sectarian head-counting' has featured in Northern Irish politics since partition in 1921, the 1998 Good Friday Agreement (GFA) introduced a mechanism for a 'border poll' on Irish unification.

Health - Politics - 01.12.2020
New study to investigate COVID-19 and misinformation
Researchers at the University of Bristol and King's College London are leading a major new study to investigate COVID-19 perceptions and misperceptions, lockdown compliance and vaccine hesitancy. The research team is gathering longitudinal survey data on trust and compliance with public health requirements over the course of the pandemic, enhancing and extending the 'Life Under Lockdown' study fielded between April and June this year.

Politics - 23.11.2020
Dogmatic people seek less information even when uncertain
People who are dogmatic about their views seek less information and make less accurate judgements as a result, even on simple matters unrelated to politics, according to a study led by UCL and Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics researchers. The researchers say their findings, published in PNAS , point to differences in thinking patterns that lead people to hold rigid opinions.

Politics - Psychology - 06.11.2020
Game combats political misinformation by letting players undermine democracy
A short online game in which players are recruited as a "Chief Disinformation Officer" and use tactics such as trolling to sabotage elections in a peaceful town has been shown to reduce susceptibility to political misinformation in its users. Fake news and online conspiracies will continue to chip away at the democratic process until we take seriously the need to improve digital media literacy across populations Sander van der Linden The free-to-play  Harmony Square  is released to the public today, along with a study on its effectiveness published in the  Harvard Misinformation Review.

Life Sciences - Politics - 06.10.2020
Battling with neighbours could make animals smarter
Fighting in baboons can be fierce David Clode Like Napoleon Bonaparte, chimpanzees are masters of intergroup conflict Franceso Ungaro [chimpanzee photograph] Vigilance is key in a world of rival outsiders Andy Radford [meerkat photograph]; Michalis Mantelos [red-ruffed lemur photograph] 6 October 2020 From ants to primates, 'Napoleonic' intelligence has evolved to help animals contend with the myriad cognitive challenges arising from interactions with rival outsiders, suggest researchers at the University of Bristol in a paper published today [Tuesday 6 October].

Politics - 11.06.2020
Effective communication between politicians and constituents vital for sustained political participation, experts say
The way politicians communicate with constituents has never been more important than during the Covid-19 pandemic, say experts. Dr Nikki Soo of Cardiff University led a study with Dr James Weinberg and Dr Kate Dommett at the University of Sheffield, which investigated how people reacted to different communications they might receive from an MP.

Social Sciences - Politics - 19.05.2020
Brexit changed people’s perception of immigrants for the better
New research by academics from four Universities including the University of Birmingham has found that anti-immigrant attitudes in the UK softened immediately following the Brexit referendum of 2016, among both Leave and Remain supporters. The report, ' A Populist Paradox? How Brexit Softened Anti-Immigrant Attitudes ' concludes that attitudes towards anti-immigration and anti-refugees were significantly softer even several months after the referendum.

Health - Politics - 05.05.2020
Bolsonaro’s attitude to coronavirus increases ’risky behaviour’ in Brazil
Study suggests that TV appearances by Bolsonaro led to millions more Brazilians ignoring social distancing in the days following broadcast. The attitude of a leader can have a significant and possibly devastating impact on individual health and the healthcare systems of a nation Tiago Cavalcanti Jair Bolsonaro's public undermining of pandemic prevention efforts reduces social distancing in the parts of Brazil where his voter base is strongest, according to a new study using location data from over 60 million phones.

Politics - 17.03.2020
Has a Bristol mayor made a difference?
Mayoral governance in Bristol has boosted the visibility of city leadership and helped promote Bristol on the national and international stage, a new study has found. The research by UWE Bristol and the University of Bristol also showed the mayoral model of leadership had unnecessarily restricted the role of councillors and reduced citizens' belief in their ability to influence decisions.

History / Archeology - Politics - 16.03.2020
Five things to ’dig’ about heritage at Durham
Our researchers are the history detectives, unearthing exciting things from our past and helping us learn from our ancestors. We are also the home to important cultural archives available for study. Here's From finding long a lost medieval chapel fit for a king, to discovering documents from our royal past.

Politics - Economics / Business - 17.12.2019
Female MPs more vocal under female leadership
Female MPs are roughly 20% more vocal in parliamentary debates where the cabinet minister is female than when the responsible minister is male, finds a new study by UCL. The research, published in the British Journal of Political Science , is the first to consider whether female leadership affects the processes or outcomes of political debate.

Politics - 16.10.2019
Renewing Political Speech and Speech writing report launched at Parliament
Politicians need to get people to trust them more if they want their speeches to be heard says a new report launched by the University of Birmingham and the University of East Anglia. The research project " The Crisis of Rhetoric: Renewing Political Speech and Speechwriting " argues that public debate and the freedom to make arguments and counterarguments are essential for democracy.

Politics - 29.07.2019
WhatsApp both strengthens and undermines Nigerian democracy, says UK-Nigeria research team
Research findings were released today by a UK-Nigerian research team examining the role of WhatsApp in Nigeria's 2019 elections. Drawing on citizen surveys and interviews with political campaigns, the report underlines the ways in which WhatsApp has promoted the spread of "fake news" around elections, but has also strengthened accountability and promoted inclusion in other areas.

Social Sciences - Politics - 27.06.2019
UK-first as £960,000 project explores integration in Bristol
A unique new project led by the University of Bristol has received a £960,000 boost to improve integration across Bristol by exploring how its citizens and communities share spaces and move around the city. University researchers on the 'Everyday Integration' project, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), will work with Bristol City Council and 29 community partners to identify existing best-practice and better understand how to overcome the various barriers people currently face.

Health - Politics - 29.05.2019
Long-term health effects of armed conflict could last years after fighting stops
Living in a warzone is linked with an increased risk of heart attack and stroke among civilians, even years after the conflict ends. The findings come from the first systematic review of the effects of armed conflict on heart disease risk, carried out by researchers at Imperial College London and the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.

Politics - 22.05.2019
Lack of evaluation in countering violent extremism may boost terror threat
A lack of evaluation of the impact of countering violent extremism (CVE) and counter-terrorism (CT) efforts may actually be increasing the threat and risk of terrorism, a new study points out. Researchers say that national and international agencies' efforts to counter terrorism and violent extremism have lacked two key ingredients - a clear and coherent theory of how individuals change and consistent evaluation of evidence of their changing attitudes.

Politics - 07.05.2019
Scale of Russian interference in European democracy revealed
Evidence of the Kremlin-backed Internet Research Agency's long-term interest in European politics and elections has been revealed in two new studies from Cardiff University's Crime and Security Research Institute. Taken together the findings provide a strong indication of the kinds of disinformation campaigns that could be directed towards the 2019 European Parliamentary elections on 23 May.

Politics - Psychology - 16.04.2019
Political fake news: they might be a liar but they’re my liar
An international collaboration has investigated how people perceive politicians when they spread misinformation. The research found supporters of the politicians reduced their belief in misinformation once corrected, yet their feelings towards the political figure remained unchanged if misinformation was presented alongside an equal number of facts.
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