About Sue

Sue spent most of her career in education, as a teacher, lecturer and consultant before landing her dream job as an academic in 2019 with the Open University.

In fact, 2019 was THE year as Sue started a PhD within a month of starting the new role and this blog features mostly reflections and thoughts from the doctoral journey. 


Passions (aside from political psychology and the Open University) - books, birds, all things Scandinavian, the Arctic, music, fitness, playing the cello and piano, and Lego.

CLAIM TO FAME

Her fitness age 18 years on the Nintendo Switch Fitness Boxing game

MOST PROUD OF

Her daughter (Liz) and son (Luka) and the people they’ve become.

THESIS

Focusing on the Silent Generation - a group of citizens born between 1927 and 1946 - and their political decision-making.

When putting together the proposal in 2019, I was very aware of the prevalent view that 'older people voted to leave the EU' in the 2016 referendum. But I was also aware that this view was partly the result of polling data putting everyone over the age of 65 (and sometimes 55) into one category. 

 

When the oldest citizens were allowed to speak, often at World War II anniversaries, they usually expressed regret at the Brexit decision. Work that came out of the LSE by Kieran Devine after he looked more deeply at Eurobarometer data also suggested that our oldest citizens did not vote to leave and are less Eurosceptic than their children.


Understanding more about the political decision-making of the Silent Generation will hopefully tell me something about the influences of, for example, nostalgia and political (and populist) rhetoric that draws on idealised views of the past, and how that is received by those who experienced life post-World War II and the era before we joined the EU. I am also using a dialogical approach, looking at how people take positions (known as I-positions) when they talk about politics, and how those positions are related to time, others and cultural influences. 

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