Welcome to the page of the Political Methodology Specialist Group of the Political Studies Association.  The group brings together people interested in all aspects of methodology applied to political research.  It was launched at the British Academy in November 2015 with a one-day conference showcasing quantitative work in political science in the UK.  The launch event was covered in blog post, which also contains interviews with the presenters about the state and future of political methodology.  

A summary statement of the objectives of the group can be downloaded here.

For more information about the group, please contact the group convenors using the information to the right.

Annual Conference

Our fifth annual conference will take place at the University of Manchester on the 10th of January 2020 from 9:30 to 19:00.  

We are delighted to announce that Rachel Gibson (University of Manchester) will deliver the keynote lecture.

Costs will cover room hire and catering. Registration fees will be: Early Career Network members: free; PSA members: £5; non-PSA members: £10

Please send proposals for papers or panels to: by 11th November 2019.

Proposals on any aspect of quantitative or qualitative political methodology are welcome. The call is open but papers should address interesting methodological issues relevant to political scientists. Papers could be a purely methodological in focus, examining a new method, some new software, or provide a critique of an existing method. Alternatively a paper might focus on a substantive research question but one which has significant methodological content and which involves innovation in the approach.  The focus of the presentation should be methodological aspects of the research even if future publications emphasise theory or findings. The Political Methodology group aims to help bridge the divide between qualitative and quantitative methods in political research and so there is no requirement that papers should only focus on advanced statistical methods, but such papers would be welcome.

We encourage submissions to reflect the diversity of the profession.

Rosalind Shorrocks is the local organiser for this meeting and will be able to advise participants in due course about accommodation for those who need an overnight stay.

Mentoring Scheme for Graduate Methodologists

The Political Methodology Specialist Group will set up a mentoring scheme for graduate students and Early Career Researchers at its annual conference at the University of Manchester on the 10th of January 2020.  We invite applications for both mentees and mentors.  The application deadline is the 11th of November 2019 (application and contact details are given below).
The aim of the mentoring scheme is to advise PhD students and Early Career Researchers on methodological aspects of their work and on their career development.

It is envisaged that the mentoring takes place at the conference during a dedicated session, but the mentoring can continue beyond the conference if both mentor and mentee agree to do so.

Because the focus of the mentoring scheme is on helping and advising graduate students and Early Career Researchers, the Specialist Group envisages that mentors will themselves have five or more years work experience.  Both the mentor and mentee role are a voluntary one.  Advice is given in good faith.  Everything said is confidential.

The aim is that mentors and mentees will be working in broadly the same substantive or methodological areas of political science or international relations.  Therefore we ask potential mentors and mentees to send us a list of 10 keywords describing their substantive and methodological areas of interest so that we can match mentees to mentors.  In addition, we ask mentees to send us a short paragraph describing their methodological background and confidence, proposed research methodology, and what kind of person or advice they are looking for, all to aid with the matching.

If you are interested in becoming a mentor or mentee, please email Andreas Murr by 11th November 2019 with your preferred role and 10 keywords describing your substantive and methodological areas of interest together with the above mentioned short paragraph for mentees.

Mailing List

The group maintains the mailing list PSA-POLMETH.  Please use the mailing list to discuss topics, advertise jobs and events, and circulate abstracts that are relevant to political methodology.  The mailing list is edited by Andreas Murr, University of Warwick.

To subscribe, unsubscribe, or search the archive, please visit

To post to the list, please send an email to PSA-POLMETH@JISCMAIL.AC.UK.

Your message will be distributed to the subscribers after approval by the editor.


The PSA’s network of 60 Specialist Groups offers a research focus for all members and covers a vast range of specialities within the discipline. SGs provide an opportunity for groups of academics who share a common interest in a particular area of the discipline to organise meetings, coordinate communications, and as outlets for research – as well as giving PSA members opportunities for developing their academic impact and professional development.”


Convenors can view the SG Handbook here.


If you would like to learn more or have any questions, do get in touch via or with Arianna Giovannini (, the Specialist Groups Trustee

Contact Us

Rosalind Shorrocks

Role: Convenor
Institution: Manchester University

Paul Whiteley

Role: Convenor
Institution: University of Essex

Stephen Fisher

Role: Convenor
Institution: University of Oxford

Andreas Murr

Role: Convenor
Institution: University of Warwick

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