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Ms Tessa Coombes

The aim of my research is to look at housing policy, agenda setting and the development of policy priorities during the Bristol Mayoral election in 2016. I am interested in why some issues are rarely discussed whilst others grab the attention of policy makers. I would like to gain a better understanding of the role local elections and new models of local governance play in framing policy agendas. 

I am particularly interested in agenda setting theory and Kingdon's multiple streams framework and how that can be used to help us understand the dynamics of interaction and activity that take place to influence policy decisions, before, during and after a local election. I am interested in providing an understanding of the tactics used by different actors to move issues up (and down) the political agenda; in identifying how the candidates perceive and respond to this influence and lobbying; and in explaining how elected politicians prioritise policy change after the election.

My approach is based on interpretive political ethnography, combining participant observation, observation, repeat interviewing and documentary evidence to build a narrative story to both explain and construct understanding.

Research keywords

  • Housing policy
  • agenda setting
  • elected mayors