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Photo of Professor Susan Banducci

Professor Susan Banducci

Ph.D. (University of California, Santa Barbara)

Professor and Director of the Exeter Q-Step Centre, Director of Research


01392 723165

Clayden 1.02

My research interests are in the areas of comparative political behaviour, media and political communication. I am the director of the Exeter Q-Step Centre working, along with a £1.44million investment from Nuffield, ESRC and Hefce and four new lecturers, toward advancing quantitative methods in the social sciences. I am also a Turing Fellow  and a deputy director of Exeter's Insitute for Data Science and Artificial Intelligence. In the Department of Politics, I am the Director of Research and a member of the Centre for Elections, Media and Participation

My full CV can be found here.


My current projects include:

Co-investigator. “Media in Context and the 2015 General Election: How Traditional and Social Media Shape Elections and Governing”. With Dan Stevens (PI), Gabriel Katz and Travis Coan. Economic & Social Research Council. £315,000.  2015-2016. with extensions to GE2017 & GE2019.

Co-Investigator. "Social Identity, Belonging and the Role of the Media in Brexit Britain". Dr Katharine Tyler, Cathrine Degnen, Susan Banducci, Dan Stevens, Travis Coan. Economic & Social Research Council. £743,911, £483,805 to Exeter. 2018-2021.


Research group links

Research interests

In general, my research focuses on inequalities in political participation, bringing together individual and institutional explanations for inequalities into multi-level analyses using large-scale cross-national surveys that. These inequalities in political engagement and participation include differences between men and women, minorities and non-minorities as well as how events over the lifecycle can contribute to inequalities. One question that motivates this research, and has significant policy implications, is which electoral rules, political institutions or policies are best at reducing political inequalities. In particular, a number of findings in my research suggest that electoral reforms meant to make participation more meaningful are better at reducing inequalities in diverse societies while reforms aimed at making participation less costly exacerbate these inequalities. Another motivating question is how the news media contribute to or ameliorate inequalities in turnout and political engagement. This latter question has motivated my most recent research. My recent publications appear in top disciplinary (British Journal of Political Science) and interdisciplinary journals (Public Opinion Quaterly).

Research supervision

Professor Banducci supervises students in the area of elections, media and political communication including the uses of social media and new forms of data. Current students are working on elections and representation, gender and political psychology. 

Research students

Current Students:

Laszlo Horvath

Raluca Popp


Past Students:

Rebecca Tidy - The Impact of Internet Tools upon Volunteer Mobilisation and Party Membership

Siim Trumm, SL at Nottingham, - Roll Call Votes in the European Parliament 

Kathrin Thomas, City University London,  - Institutions and Policy Responsiveness

Maarja Luhiste, Lecturer at Newastle - - Gender, Media and Electoral Success

Marc Herzog - Turkey, Muslim Parties and Development (completed 2011)

Sinem Ayangolu - Media Effects in Developing Democracies


Modules taught


I have close to 20 years working on international, collaborative projects from the New Zealand Election Study, the European Election Study and 2 early career researcher training networks. My recent research has been supported by the ESRC and I hold and have held funding from the ESRC for three projects. Most recently, I am a co-PI in a project examining the role of the media in the 2015 British Election and I am PI on a European Industrial Doctoral Training partnership funded by the European Commission. For the latter project we have recruited 3 researchers to undertake projects examining the effects of online vote advice tools, the use of voluntary samples for social science analysis and physiological responses to online information.

I was a founding member, 2008, of the Centre for Elections, Media and Parties - CEMaP (now Media, Elections and Participation). In the six years since the founding of the centre, the staff of the centre have earned over £5million in research and consultancy funding that has led to seven funded PhDs students and 5 post-doctoral researchers. I have been principal investigator and a co-investigator on a number of these projects. My overall objective has been to strengthen the capacity for the use of and training in advanced social science methods, strengthen approaches to the comparative study of elections that draw on methodological strengths in the UK such as multi-level modelling, cross-national surveys (e.g. European Social Survey) and media analysis.

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