Photo of Paul Webb

Paul Webb
Professor of Politics (Politics)
T: +44 (0)1273 877796 or +44 (0)1273 678578


Paul Webb's research interests lie in the field of representative democracy, with a particular focus on British and comparative party politics, and electoral processes. His main current research activities include the Political Party Databse Project a major project on political party organizations with Susan Scarrow of the University of Houston and Thomas Poguntke of the University of Duessledorf (, which has generated the edited volume Organizing Political Parties. This is co-funded by the national funding agencies of the UK, USA and Germany to the total tune of £450,000.  He is also heavily engaged in codirecting the ESRC Party Members Project  with Tim Bale of Queen Mary University London on the politics of party membership in the UK; this is funded by a grant awarded by the ESRC, to a total value of £700,000. To date this has generated multiple conference papers and articles in refereed journals, and media contributions. Along with a third member of the PMP team, Monica Poletti, Webb and Bale are contracted to write a paperback monograph on party members in the UK for Routledge.

Previous major projects include Gender and the Conservative Party for which Sarah Childs (then of the University of Bristol) and Paul Webb were awarded £476,000 by the Economic & Social Research CouncilThe project made use of qualitative and quantitative methods to investigate the position of women in the contemporary Conservative Party, the party's evolving policies towards women in society, and the impact of these policies on party competition. The project was completed in 2010 and led to the publication of Sex, Gender and the Conservative Party: From Iron Lady to Kitten Heels (Palgrave Macmillan 2011), along with numerous journal articles, conference papers and sundry commentaries for the media and blogs.

From 2009-2011, he worked on Representative Politics & Democratic Disconnect, a research project on citizen attitudes to political participation. This research was funded through a £40,000 Leverhulme Research Fellowship award and a smaller British Academy grant. Data was gathered through IPSOS-Mori focus groups and a specially commissioned YouGov survey of adults. This generated various conference papers and presentations, and an article for the European Journal of Political Research.

Paul is also engaged on writing a second edition of The Modern British Party System, which will be published by Oxford University Press after the 2015 general election.

He is coeditor (along with David Farrell of University College Dublin) of the international journal Party Politics (