People

Professor Robert Johns

Professor
Department of Government
Professor Robert Johns
  • Email

  • Telephone

    +44 (0) 1206 872508

  • Location

    5.021, Colchester Campus

  • Academic support hours

    Tuesday 4-5, Thursday 1-2

Profile

Biography

Rob Johns is Professor in Politics. He arrived at Essex in October 2010 having previously worked in the Department of Government at the University of Strathclyde. His teaching and research are in the fields of political psychology (especially the nature and origins of public opinion), electoral behaviour and questionnaire design. Rob is a Principal Investigator on the 2016 Scottish Election Study and has worked on a number of other major survey projects. Rob would be happy to supervise students whose research also falls in the broad field of public opinion.

Qualifications

  • BA Oxford

  • MA PhD Essex

Research and professional activities

Research interests

how and why people think what they think about politics.

Open to supervise

do people care about civilian as well as military casualties in war?

Open to supervise

Do voters feel represented by parties, even if those parties have no chance of power?

Open to supervise

Why are women less likely to favour Scottish independence?

Open to supervise

Are more moderate parties regarded as more competent?

Open to supervise

Current research

Recruited by referendum: Understanding the party membership surge in Scotland (ESRC award ES/N105090/1) (with Lynn Bennie and James Mitchell, Universities of Aberdeen and Edinburgh)

More moderate equals more competent: Ideological position and valence judgements (BA/Leverhulme award SG163176) (with Ann-Kristin Koelln, Aarhus University)

Scottish Election Study, 2016 (ESRC award ES/N018060/1) (with Ailsa Henderson, James Mitchell and Chris Carman (Universities of Edinburgh and Glasgow)

Social media and the dynamics of public opinion (with Heinz Brandenburg and Marcel van Egmond, Universities of Strathclyde and Marcel van Egmond, Universities of Strathclyde and Amsterdam)

Teaching and supervision

Current teaching responsibilities

  • Political Behaviour (GV202)

  • Measuring Public Opinion (GV205)

  • Political Analysis: Introduction to OLS (GV207)

  • Project: Collaborative Faculty - Student Research Experience (GV832)

Previous supervision

Lena Bernice Barrett
Lena Bernice Barrett
Thesis title: The Contribution of Civil Society to Combatting Torture and Ill-Treatment: A Cross-National Analysis
Degree subject: Human Rights
Degree type: Doctor of Philosophy
Awarded date: 22/5/2019
Octael Nieto Vazquez
Octael Nieto Vazquez
Thesis title: A One-Shot Deal on the Spot: How Vote Buying Affects Electoral Behaviour. Experimental Evidence From Mexico.
Degree subject: Government
Degree type: Doctor of Philosophy
Awarded date: 2/7/2018
Joe Greenwood
Joe Greenwood
Thesis title: The Influence of Structural and Perceived Privilege on Political Participation in the United Kingdom
Degree subject: Government
Degree type: Doctor of Philosophy
Awarded date: 17/1/2018
Chi-Lin Tsai
Chi-Lin Tsai
Degree subject: Government
Degree type: Doctor of Philosophy
Awarded date: 6/7/2017
Susana Cabaco
Susana Cabaco
Thesis title: Promoting Democracy From the Outside: International Aid and Political Parties in the Context of Democratization
Degree subject: Government
Degree type: Doctor of Philosophy
Awarded date: 2/7/2015

Publications

Journal articles (31)

Johns, R. and Kölln, A-K., Moderation and competence: How a party’s ideological position shapes its valence reputation. American Journal of Political Science

Johns, RA. and Davies, GAM., (2019). Civilian casualties and public support for military action: Experimental evidence. Journal of Conflict Resolution. 63 (1), 251-281

Davidson, S., Elstub, S., Johns, R. and Stark, A., (2017). Rating the debates: The 2010 UK party leaders? debates and political communication in the deliberative system. British Politics. 21 (2), 183-208

Davies, GAM. and Johns, R., (2016). R2P from below: Does the British public view humanitarian interventions as ethical and effective?. International Politics. 53 (1), 118-137

Davies, GAM. and Johns, R., (2015). The domestic consequences of international over-cooperation: An experimental study of microfoundations. Conflict Management and Peace Science. 33 (4), 343-360

Brandenburg, H. and Johns, R., (2014). The Declining Representativeness of the British Party System, and Why It Matters. Political Studies. 62 (4), 704-725

Johns, R. and Davies, GAM., (2014). Coalitions of the willing? International backing and British public support for military action. Journal of Peace Research. 51 (6), 767-781

Johns, R. and Brandenburg, H., (2014). Giving voters what they want? Party orientation perceptions and preferences in the British electorate. Party Politics. 20 (1), 89-104

Brandenburg, H. and Johns, R., (2014). The Declining Representativeness of the British Party System, and Why it Matters. Political Studies. 62 (4), 703-703

Davies, GAM. and Johns, R., (2013). Audience Costs among the British Public: The Impact of Escalation, Crisis Type, and Prime Ministerial Rhetoric. International Studies Quarterly. 57 (4), 725-737

Johns, R., Mitchell, J. and Carman, CJ., (2013). Constitution or Competence? The SNP's Re-election in 2011. Political Studies. 61 (1_suppl), 158-178

Davies, GAM. and Johns, R., (2012). British Public Confidence in MI6 and Government Use of Intelligence: The Effect on Support for Preventive Military Action. Intelligence and National Security. 27 (5), 669-688

Johns, R. and Davies, GAM., (2012). Democratic Peace or Clash of Civilizations? Target States and Support for War in Britain and the United States. The Journal of Politics. 74 (04), 1038-1052

Johns, R., Bennie, L. and Mitchell, J., (2012). Gendered nationalism: The gender gap in support for the Scottish National Party. Party Politics. 18 (4), 581-601

Shephard, M. and Johns, R., (2011). A Face for Radio? How Viewers and Listeners Reacted Differently to the Third Leaders' Debate in 2010. British Journal of Politics and International Relations. 14 (1), 1-18

Johns, R. and Shephard, M., (2011). Facing the Voters: The Potential Impact of Ballot Paper Photographs in British Elections. Political Studies Review. 59 (3), 636-658

Johns, R., Winters, K. and Campbell, R., (2011). My Heart Says One Thing but My Head Says Another? Men, Women, and the Psychology of Partisanship in Britain. Politics & Gender. 7 (02), 193-222

Pattie, C., Denver, D., Johns, R. and Mitchell, J., (2011). Raising the tone? The impact of ?positive? and ?negative? campaigning on voting in the 2007 Scottish Parliament election. Electoral Studies. 30 (2), 333-343

Johns, R., Winters, K. and Campbell, R., (2011). My Heart Says One Thing but My Head Says Another? Men, Women, and the Psychology of Partisanship in Britain. Politics & Gender. 7 (02), 193-222

Johns, R., (2010). Credit where it's due? Valence politics, attributions of responsibility, and multi-level elections. Political Behavior. 33 (1), 53-77

Carman, CJ. and Johns, R., (2010). Linking coalition attitudes and split-ticket voting: The Scottish Parliament elections of 2007. Electoral Studies. 29 (3), 381-391

Johns, R., (2010). Measuring issue salience in British elections: Competing interpretations of 'most important issue'. Political Research Quarterly. 63 (1), 143-158

Denver, D., Johns, R. and Carman, C., (2009). Rejected ballot papers in the 2007 Scottish Parliament election: The voters? perspective. British Politics. 4 (1), 3-21

Johns, R., (2009). Tracing Foreign Policy Decisions: A Study of Citizens' Use of Heuristics. British Journal of Politics and International Relations. 11 (4), 574-592

Johns, R., Mitchell, J., Denver, D. and Pattie, C., (2009). Valence Politics in Scotland: Towards an Explanation of the 2007 Election. Political Studies. 57 (1), 207-233

Shephard, M. and Johns, R., (2008). Candidate Image and Electoral Preference in Britain. British Politics. 3 (3), 324-349

Johns, R. and Carman, C., (2008). Coping with coalitions? Scottish voters under a proportional system. Representation. 44 (4), 301-315

Johns, R., Carman, C. and Mitchell, J., (2008). The�unfortunate�natural experiment in ballot design: The Scottish Parliamentary Elections of 2007. Electoral Studies. 27 (3), 442-459

Adamson, K. and Johns, R., (2008). The Vlaams Blok, its electorate, and the ideological articulation of ?Europe?. Journal of Political Ideologies. 13 (2), 133-156

Johns, R. and Shephard, M., (2007). Gender, Candidate Image and Electoral Preference. The British Journal of Politics and International Relations. 9 (3), 434-460

Johns, R., (2006). Psephology at Speed. Political Studies Review. 4 (3), 307-309

Books (6)

Allen, N., Bartle, J., Birch, S., Campbell, R., Clarke, HD., Curtice, J., Goodwin, M., Johns, R., Kenny, M., Quinn, T. and Whiteley, P., None past the post: Britain at the polls 2017. Manchester University Press

Johns, R. and Mitchell, J., (2016). Takeover: Explaining the Extraordinary Rise of the SNP. Biteback Publishing. 9781785900327

Carman, C., Johns, R. and Mitchell, J., (2014). More Scottish than British: The 2011 Scottish Parliament Election. Palgrave Macmillan. 978-1-137-02369-8

Denver, D., Carman, C. and Johns, R., (2012). Elections and Voters in Britain (3rd edition). Palgrave Macmillan. 9780230241619

Mitchell, J., Bennie, L. and Johns, R., (2011). The Scottish National Party: Transition to Power. Oxford University Press. 9780199580002

Johns, R., Denver, D., Mitchell, J. and Pattie, C., (2010). Voting for a Scottish Government: The Scottish Parliament Elections of 2007. Manchester University Press. 0719081084

Book chapters (5)

Johns, R., (2017). Experiments. In: The SAGE Handbook of Electoral Behaviour. Editors: Arzheimer, K., Evans, J. and Lewis-Beck, M., . SAGE Publications Limited. 907- 933. 1473913152. 9781473913158

Heath, O. and Johns, R., (2012). Measuring political behaviour and attitudes. In: Social Measurement Through Social Surveys: An Applied Approach. 47- 68. 9780754674870

Johns, R. and Padgett, S., (2010). How Do Political Parties Shape Public Opinion? Britain in a European Perspective.. In: British Social Attitudes: The 26th Report. Editors: Park, A., Curtice, J., Thomson, C., Phillips, M., Clery, E. and Butt, S., . Sage Publications Ltd. 39- 62. 9781849203876

Heath, O. and Johns, R., (2010). Measuring political behaviour and attitudes. In: Social Measurement through Social Surveys: An Applied Approach. 47- 67. 9780754674870

Johns, R., (2009). Behaviouralism. In: The Oxford Handbook of British Politics. Editors: Flinders, M., Gamble, A., Hay, C. and Kenny, M., . Oxford University Press. 9780199230952

Grants and funding

2018

Improving DfIDs reading of the public opinion environment for overseas aid

University of Essex

Improving DfIDs reading of the public opinion environment for overseas aid

University of Leeds

Business and Local Government Data Research Centre (BLG DRC)

Economic and Social Research Council

2017

More moderate equals more competent? How ideological position shapes valence judgements about a party

The British Academy

2016

Recruited by Referendum: Party membership Energised

Economic & Social Research Council

2014

Scottish Referendum Study 2014

Economic & Social Research Council

2012

Scottish Election Study 2011

Economic & Social Research Council

How do Perceptions of Privilege Impact on Political Activity in the UK?

YouGov

2010

Foreign Policy Attitudes and Support for the War

Economic & Social Research Council

Contact

rajohn@essex.ac.uk
+44 (0) 1206 872508

Location:

5.021, Colchester Campus

Academic support hours:

Tuesday 4-5, Thursday 1-2