What factors would you say determine the level of political participation in the UK?

Essay by nirvanarocksmysocks November 2006

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- Education about politics and how it affects everyone would help, and trying to stimulate an interest in children. For example, the government has introduced citizenship classes in schools, David Miliband has been advocating more power for local neighbourhood groups and Gordon Brown has called for a new constitutional settlement.

- How much politicians are in touch with the electorate, especially since the majority of politicians are white, 'middle-class' men, and therefore not a fair representation of the State. Voting levels will rise if they manage to convince the electorate that they know what the people want, and are therefore worth voting for.

- Whether political parties show that they and their policies are different to and better than other parties' policies, because otherwise people might feel that there is no real difference and not worth deciding between them.

- How well a politician reaches out to its constituent and makes it known to them that they could have direct effect in local politics.

Also how much of an effort they make to gain voters and make the citizens of their constituent feel like it would be in their own interests to vote for them, even if a different party are voted in to Government. This is because interest in politics is linked with how relevant it is to people's lives, because if you are not interested in the result then you are less likely to be motivated to vote.

- Whether or not candidates try to persuade the people that might not usually vote, which although now is a wide range of people, the target groups are young people and the mobility-challenged. If they aim to make politics interesting for the young and other uninterested people, and try to help people who might not be able to get to a polling station to vote, voting figures could be increased.

- How well parents make sure their children, have an understanding of politics and how important it is to participate, and whether or not they encourage their children to vote when they reach eighteen.