Wondering who to vote for on June 8th?

Oriel Science welcomes the return of the workshop that explores ways to help match candidates with voters ahead of the general election

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Voting in an election is a relatively straightforward matter, but what lies behind this simple act? How can we know how well our vote represents our beliefs and interests? With an increasingly fragmented party system it can be tricky to match our views to those of the parties on offer.

Researchers at Swansea University have been working with voters and candidates to design a questionnaire that matches voters to the candidates who best represents their views. A team of Political Scientists at Swansea University, including Dr Matthew Wall, postgraduate student James Andrews and a team of undergraduate students have developed the questionnaire which is accessible at www.whichcandidate.co.uk. Dr Wall explains that the questionnaire is what is known as a VAA - or Voter Advice Application; “It’s a website that allows users to match themselves with candidates according to their beliefs on a variety of issues”.

Oriel’s ‘Science of Voting’ workshop will trial the questionnaire and offer a chance for discussions on key political issues, as the national election approaches on Thursday 8th June.

Dr Wall explains: “The questionnaire is a fantastic way for voters to learn more about the candidates. But they also bring the candidate’s attention to the issues voters care about. In a world where politics can be dominated by personalities, we believe that’s a step in the right direction. Ultimately we are trying to foster debate, to help voters and politicians feel more in touch. With a general election fast approaching, tools that allow voters to reflect on the policies of the parties have never been more important.”

“We’re really pleased to be running a voter workshop prior to the general election”, says Dr Mary Gagen, one of the Oriel Science directors. “Oriel Science is a place where the university’s researchers can have conversations with the public about the kind of topics we all care about. In these politically uncertain times we’re happy to be providing a forum for the people of Swansea to chat to a political scientist - Matt will be there to guide people through the online questionnaire and answer questions.  It’s going to be a great opportunity to gain some detailed insight in to the beliefs of our country’s major political parties if you’re still, as many people are, wondering who to vote for on June 8th”.

The ‘Science of Voting’ Oriel Science workshop (in partnership with Swansea University) will take place on Saturday 3rd June from 10 am – 4 pm at Princess Way, Swansea, SA1 5HE. 

The ‘Story of Time’ exhibition at the Oriel Science venue is also set to continue.  Where does the time go? Can time really fly? Is time just an illusion? The Story of Time exhibition answers these questions.

Guarded by the Tardis and a Back to the Future DeLorean car, visitors can meander through, interact with, listen, look, touch and generally play around with exhibits around the theme of Time. Discover how the Higgs boson was first detected in the mock-up of CERN’s Large Hadron Collider, see a glacial calving in Greenland, tell the time with tree rings, witness the history of the universe displayed on a 30 metre time wall, and hear the sounds of deep space as you watch a time lapse video of the southern stars.

Suitable for all ages, Oriel Science’s mission is to bring the wonders of Science to the public through exhibitions on a scientific theme, which will inspire visitors to think and explore how science and technology impact their daily lives.

Oriel Science is located in Princess Way, Swansea, SA1 5HE. Between Castle Square and The Kingsway, next to Zinco Lounge.

The Oriel Science ‘Story of Time’ exhibit will close on June 4th. Oriel Science will re-open in new premises later in 2017. Updates will be available on our  web site  http://www.orielscience.co.uk/

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