Information sheets (last version 28/11/2020)

Please take some time to read this information and ask any further questions if anything is unclear. Contact details can be found at the end of this document.

What is the purpose of the study?

The aim of this research is to investigate the phenomenon of political populism after the Brexit referendum and how intra-party democracy processes can influence the populism impact.

Who is organising and funding this research?

The research for this study is being undertaken by a MSCA-IF fellow at the University of Sussex. This research is funded by the European Commission and has been reviewed and approved by the University of Sussex Research Ethics Committee.

Why have I been asked to participate?

This project aims to interview 500+ members/supporters of political parties.

Do I have to take part?

It is not compulsory to take part in this study and you may ask the researcher questions or ask for more information before deciding whether or not to participate. However, I believe that you have something important to contribute to this study and to further researchers who want to study populism effect, and, as such, I hope that you will contribute. If you agree to take part in this study, you will be asked to sign a consent form. Please note, however, that you are free to withdraw from the study at any time and will not be asked to give any reasons if you do choose to withdraw.

What will taking part in the study involve?

If you agree to take part in this study, you will complete two web surveys (named WS1 and WS2) roughly four months apart  from each other.

Each web survey will likely last between 15 and 20 minutes. You will be able to take breaks throughout the web survey and complete it on multiple occasions. You may also be asked to participate in a follow-up web survey, although participation in this is optional.

After the first web survey, you could be asked to participate also in a debate on a party forum in order to better analyse some issues and understand the general approach to a collective discussion.

All of this is, of course, optional and you may choose which one/s you want to participate in.

Please note that you are free to withdraw from both web surveys and forum debate at any time and will not be asked to give any reasons.

What are the possible benefits of taking part?

The aim of this project is to create a database of answers of people whose political experiences reflect the everyday lives related to the populist issues. The everyday lives and experiences of ordinary members are very important in allowing researchers to understand the populism effect, which is the aim of this project. I hope that you will find it rewarding to have your contributions publically recognised and that you will be pleased to be able to add to a significant collection of archived web surveys that will enable researchers to understand more about populism.

What are the possible disadvantages and risks of taking part?

I hope that the experience of taking part in this study will be enjoyable for you. However, there is the possibility that, as with all research, some opinions may be requested. You will at no point be obliged to answer about any topic that makes you uncomfortable.

How will my web survey be used?

The web survey collected in this study will be used alongside other surveys to uncover more about populism. Publications which arise from this project may use quotations from your answer, but in an aggregated way. Once the answers have been deposited at the end of the project, future researchers may also wish to use and quote aggregated answers in their work. In all works produced using your answers, your name and other personal information will be anonymised.

What happens to the web surveys collected during the study?

Answers will be collected in a database by the researcher for the duration of the project. Only the researcher will have access to the answers and personal information.

What happens at the end of the project?

All participants are able to request a summary of the research findings should they wish to by contacting the researcher. The digital online copy of the papers, reports and articles will be published with open access, meaning that it will be available to all internet users.

What should I do if I have any concerns or complaints?

If you have a concern about any aspect of this project, please speak to the researcher who will do her best to answer your query. The researcher should acknowledge your concern within seven  working days and give you an indication of how she intends to deal with it. If you remain unhappy or wish to make a formal complaint, please contact the chair of the Research Ethics Committee at the University of Sussex who will seek to resolve the matter in a reasonably expeditious manner.

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