Reflection— The 2015 Election Manifesto Audit

As the 2017 General Election draws close it feels a timely point to reflect on our experiences drawing together the 2015 Election Manifesto Audit.

Ahead of the UK 2015 General Election, and inspired by the ASAP Oceania chapter, ASAP UK delivered an audit of the main political parties’ manifestos. The audit assessed the impact of the parties’ respective policies on poverty, social inequality and environmental sustainability, both in the UK and globally.

The audit was designed and coordinated by the ASAP UK core team, drawing on input from a group of leading academics united in a common resolve to support the British public in making informed decisions at the ballot box. The outcome of the audit was published online on 22nd April 2015.

ASAP UK’s bespoke and innovative audit methodology enabled a consistent and objective summary of the impact of each party’s policies on poverty, social inequality and environmental sustainability. We defined poverty as the absence of a flourishing life, a definition that drew on the work of three Southern economists ‐ Amartya Sen, Manfred Max‐Neef and Julio Boltvinik.

To complete the audit we mobilised volunteer authors, peer reviewers and academic advisors from over twenty different universities, as well as communications experts. Our authors reviewed key policy areas and cross‐cutting themes of the main party manifestos, including housing, education, health, immigration and international aid.