Nov. 16, 2020

What We Are Learning This Week With Sessional Instructor Julie Croskill!

This Week in POLI 431 we are exploring local candidates’ campaign strategies—standing out, blending in and getting out the vote.
Julie Croskill - Banner
Julie Croskill

November 16, 2020 in POLI 431 Canadian Political Parties

Sessional Instructor Julie Croskill is exploring the importance of local candidates to vote choice, and how they strategize their personal and party vote campaign. 


Can you tell us a little more about this topic?

When it comes to choosing who to vote for, most folks consider party leaders, political platforms, and certain key election issues like economic or environmental policy. Despite these considerations, in some close races, the role of the local candidate--and the campaign they run, is critical to not only their own electoral fortune, but their party's as well. This week we look at local campaign strategy and examine if, how, and why local candidates run a personal as opposed to party-centered campaign.

Julie Croskill

What else do you cover in your course?

This course reviews Canadian political parties at the federal level. We look at each of the main political parties in terms of their history, ideology, position in the party system, and how they strategize to enhance their vote share in our first-past-the-post electoral system. In addition, we also look at parties from a democratic perspective when we review how each selects their leaders and candidates, how they engage their party membership, and what they do to provide meaningful representation to Canadians.

What do you love about teaching this course?

This course provides ample opportunity for displaying and demonstrating real research projects. For example, in lecture we ask and answer questions such as:

  • What are the regional differences in political attitudes amongst Liberal Party supporters?
  • How well do Canadian political parties support female candidates in winnable seats?
  • How do election lawn signs correspond with vote share?

Finally, what other courses would you recommend for students interested in this topic?

UCalgary offers several great courses that look at campaigning and governance at different levels. I would recommend POLI 425 City Government and POLI 427 Government and Politics of Alberta.


Our Thanks to Julie Croskill for sharing your course with us!