The University of Glasgow: What are the strengths and weaknesses of plurality electoral systems compared to systems of proportional representation?..

December 21, 2021
    The National University of Life and Environmental Sciences of Ukraine is one of the oldest and most authoritative educational institutions in Ukraine. Over the past few years, it has grown from a branch university into a classical university of the European type. The spirit of change is inspired by young knowledge seekers who are lucky enough to combine studies in Ukraine and abroad. Among them is a sophomore of the Faculty of Law, Vladyslav Danyliuk, who is studying law, politics and economics at the University of Glasgow (Scotland, UK).

    The University of Glasgow was founded in 1451. It is one of the oldest universities in the UK and the 4th oldest university in the English-speaking world.

    The University of Glasgow is considered one of the best in Scotland and is among the top 15 universities in the UK (right after the University of Oxford and the University of Cambridge) and the top 100 universities in the world according to QS World University Rankings 2020.

    The University of Glasgow is a member of the prestigious Russell Group, which includes 24 best research universities in the UK. According to the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014, 81% of the research achievements were rated as "internationally excellent" and achieved the 10th position on research volume in the United Kingdom. The annual budget for research is 179 million pounds.

    In June 1933 Albert Einstein gave the first Gibson Lecture, on his general theory of relativity; he subsequently received an honorary degree from the university. University Professor Jan Donald first published ultrasound images of the fetus in 1958. Among the university alumni are people who have changed the world of science on a global scale: economist and philosopher, founder of economic theory as a science, Adam Smith; inventor-mechanic James Watt; physicist and mechanic known for his work in thermodynamics Lord Kelvin, scientist and surgeon, creator of medical antiseptics Joseph Lister; radiochemist, who discovered isotopes Frederick Soddy; physician who widely used X-ray diagnostics John Macintyre; engineer, creator of the first mechanical system John Louis Byrd; astrophysicist, discoverer of a new class of astronomical objects - pulsars - Jocelyn Bell Burnell; experimental physicist, whose team discovered gravitational waves and many others, Sheila Rowan.
    Among the graduates and staff of the university are 7 Nobel Prize winners, two Prime Ministers of the United Kingdom and the first Minister of Scotland. More than 30 university graduates currently work in the parliaments of Great Britain and Scotland.

    According to Vladyslav Danyliuk, the peculiarity of studying at the University of Glasgow is self-study (i.e. independent student work). The emphasis is not on learning and accumulation of a certain knowledge base, but on the development of the student as a thinking person with such skills as creative thinking and critical thinking. The most common tool used by students to demonstrate their creativity and ability to research, analyze, summarize and propose changes are essays devoted to exploring the subject areas.
    During the examination session at the University of Glasgow, Vladyslav Danyliuk successfully defended his research on the peculiarities of different electoral systems in Europe and the world. This topic is also relevant for Ukraine. So, the conclusion that emerges from this research based on a large number of sources, is that each state chooses the electoral system that suits it best. For example, there are 300 members that are elected by single member plurality voting and another 180 by proportional representation in Japan. However, electoral systems do not determine whether elect will be bad or good. This is determined by the ability of civil society to resist political corruption and depends on the strength of the legal framework, when "democracy" means not only "choice" but also "equality" and "responsibility".

Vladyslav Danyliuk


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