A moment to reflect

This is just a short update on my progress since Tuesday, and my goals for the week ahead.

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After a couple of weeks of very intense reading, yes I’ve decided that is a thing, this week has been an opportunity to reflect on all the things I’ve picked up from the background reading and now starting to plan my report.

After finishing the background reading on Monday, I spent Tuesday and Wednesday reflecting and taking stock on all the things I’ve picked up from it. I’d accumulated several pages of notes from the reading, so I tried to condense that down; identifying where different books either agreed or disagreed with each other. This really helped with my thought process. When reading books, especially well-researched ones, I often find myself agreeing with the author. However, comparing the books directly with each other allowed me to look at how each academic had reached their conclusions.

From this, I then started planning the rest of my research. With the Brexit and Trump votes key to my report, I have begun looking at the role of populism in each of the votes. I did some research during my preparation to make certain that both events were suitable for research but have now begun looking at each event in more detail. There is significant debate over the role of populism and addressing this debate will be an important part of both my research and my report.

I will start next week by discussing my plan with my supervisor and making changes where necessary. After this, I will start my research by looking directly at the relationship between populism and social demographic changes.

Joshua Robert Chapman

Student, University of York

I am a Politics and International Relations student at the University of York. My research project is titled: 'How do social demographic changes influence the spread of populism'. I will look at the Brexit referendum and Trump's election in 2016. These will be my focal points from which I hope to find broader trends about the causes for the growth of populism in modern democracies.

Please ask me about anything politics or international relations related, in particular, political behaviour and psychology; i.e. if something happens, what happens next and why?