Mark Shephard

Mark Shephard

Social media and the indyref
University of Strathclyde
Senior Lecturer


Research includes: views on independence and nationalities; effects of social media on young people; whether social media has deliberative qualities; legislative impact on governments; youth parliaments; and image and voting behaviour. My most recent research on social media has been used to develop teaching guides and exercises for the classroom and has also been disseminated via a Political Studies Association youth politics publication, as well as having been adapted for a worldwide audience in a 2014 Tedx talk on Youtube (


Social media

Posts by this author

Photo of tools of measurement

Implications of varying mandate definitions for Indyref2 legitimacy at Westminster-level elections

Mark Shephard, Senior Lecturer at the University of Strathclyde, examines the scenario of the SNP campaigning solely on the issue of independence in the next General Election and variations in mandate definitions across the different political groups and academics.
Exterior of Scottish Parliament

Does a majority of seats from pro-independence parties in the Scottish Parliament provide a mandate for a second independence referendum?

Most sides like to claim that they have the people on their side…that they have a mandate for action…Following the 2019 General Election in which the Conservatives won 56% of the seats (365/650), Boris Johnson claimed he had a mandate to get Brexit done. Also following that election, the SNP won 81% of the Scottish seats (48/59) and so Nicola Sturgeon claimed to have a mandate for the Scottish Parliament to be given the right to decide upon a second independence referendum.
Messiest Election

Drowning in a Sea of Unknowns: from the Messiest of Elections to the Messiest of Constitutional Futures

The General Election in December is the messiest ever, argues Mark Shephard University of Strathclyde. Voters are thinking in four constitutional futures, but they are unlikely to get the future they vote for.

Is The ‘Yes’ Online Tsunami Finally Paying Dividends?

In a blog originally published at What Scotland Thinks, Mark Shephard and Stephen Quinlan discuss the latest on the social media campaign.

Vote No get Yes, Vote Yes get No? A Classic Downsian rush to Devo-Max?

Mark Shephard, University of Strathclyde suggests that Federalism could save the Union, but then again, so might independence…

Game Over for the UK? Anti-Westminster Sentiment – A Manifestation of the Scottish Independence Campaign or Part of Wider UK Concerns?

Mark Shephard evaluates anti-Westminster sentiment in the run up to the independence referendum.