Call for paper proposals for a workshop „Voters, protest and policies: Bridging public opinion, social movement outcomes and policy responsiveness research“, 16-17th June 2014, University of Leicester, UK, A research workshop sponsored by: The RESPONSIVEGOV project and The MOVEOUT network

Studies on governmental responsiveness have often taken two different angles: analyzing reactions to opinion polls or the general ‘public mood’ on the one hand, and to collective action, on the other. A large and increasing body of scholarship focuses on how much attention governments pay to opinion polls and to the public mood expressed through surveys. The traditional approach in political science has been to measure or approximate public opinion through the beliefs and preferences expressed in representative surveys. This method, however, does not account for the fact that public opinion, or at least a segment of it, is also expressed through other means. Collective action – from demonstrations and to street occupations – is another way for the public to voice their views, demands, and policy preferences. Studies of social movement outcomes, particularly the ones interested in the effect of mobilization on public policy take collective action seriously, but often neglect the role of public opinion.

This research workshop aims at starting to bridge the gaps between these different areas of research that have tended to ignore each other. The workshop will bring together the team members of the European Research Council-funded project ResponsiveGov and the members of MOVEOUT the international network on the study of social movement outcomes, as well as other scholars working in these topics.

We are seeking paper proposals from scholars who would be willing to participate in the workshop with papers that examine the intersections of public opinion, social movement outcomes and policy responsiveness research. We will welcome theoretical and empirical contributions.

The workshop has no fee, provides coffee/tea and lunch on both days. The participants are expected to cover their own travel and accommodations costs. Only limited support towards travel and accommodation costs might be available, depending on funding availability, and it would be allocated strictly on a needs basis.

If you are interested in participating in the workshop, we invite you to send your paper proposal by email no later than 8th January 2014 to responsivegov(at) The proposal should include title, author(s), institutional affiliation(s), email contact, an abstract of up to 600 words, and information about funding needs (if any) to be able to attend the workshop.