Research project

Discourse and Democracy: The Language of Local Government

Project overview

We are investigating how national political discourses on climate change are adapted at local government level, so that we can develop clear, effective, and inclusive communication strategies between local/national governments and the stakeholders they serve. As COP26 has shown, broad goals on climate change are largely set at international and national level, whereas the tangible action required is essentially implemented at a local level. We therefore seek to understand how these two levels are connected in political discourse.
The political principle of subsidiarity suggests that decisions which affect people should be taken by closest level of authority to them, and while political discourse at national and global levels has received a lot of scholarly attention, discourse at the subsidiary level has been hitherto under-researched. The comparison of data from Germany and the UK which implement subsidiarity in very different ways will allow us to understand how these different political systems influence the way discourses are altered when entering local debates.
(1) Preliminary Fieldwork in Halle (Germany) and Southampton (UK)
(2) One-day workshop, 1 July 2022 with local politicians, national politicians, climate change activists and international researchers
This project is supported by the Faculty of Arts & Humanities Strategic Research


Lead researcher

Dr Michael Kranert PhD (UCL), QTS, Staatsexamen

Associate Professor

Research interests

  • Discourse Analysis
  • Political Discourse
  • Comparative Political Discourse Analysis
Connect with Michael

Research outputs