On 11th December 2019 Dr Thomas Loughran presented findings from our project to the Democracy and Elections research group at the University of Manchester. The presentation entitled ‘Who Supports Votes at 16? Lessons from 1969’ presented two aspects of our research that were published in the recent summary article from Political Insight. Our presentation argued that there are key policy lessons that need to learned from the lowering of the voting age to 18 in 1969 that are relevant to the contemporary ‘Votes-at-16’ debate. We explore the reasons why such a policy learning process has not been undertaken and the consequences of this to the implementation of ‘Votes-at-16’. The second half of the presentation focused on analysing our survey research in which we demonstrate that public opinion on lowering the voting age has become increasingly politically polarised and therefore presents a challenging policy environment for those trying to implement it.
We are grateful to have been invited to present at the Seminar and received extensive and detailed feedback which was extremely useful. The turnout was particularly impressive given the timing of the seminar on the eve of the General Election.