Reuben Shapland

  • Doctoral Researcher
Doctoral Research Reuben Shapland earing a beige shirt

Reuben studied BSc Politics & Sociology at the University of Bristol, followed by MSc Politics & Communication at LSE. He then completed a social science research master’s at Loughborough as part of his 1+3 ESRC studentship. He is interested in political parties, constitutions, elections, political communication and strategy.

Orchestrated Chamber: An historical investigation of Prime Minister’s Questions in the broadcast age (1989-present)

PGR Supervisors: Professor Dominic Wring and Professor David Deacon

His research focuses on the historical development of PMQs in the broadcast age. It examines what this institutional practice achieves and how, as an ‘invented tradition’, it has the dual capacity to both entertain and repel the public.

As part of this historical analysis, the significance of humour is examined as a tool deployed by politicians; to humiliate, to evade accountability and command the loyalty of backbenchers.

The methodology is a combination of content analysis of Parliament and media coverage, interviews with journalists and key political actors who have been involved in PMQs and focus groups with the public.