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Parish Pump Politics


Brexit and Trump are providing the drama

Despite newspaper columns and radio airtime full of TDs and Ministers talking about local politics, Irish people look abroad for real importance.

Brands need to consider consumer's global perspective.


Local Politics: No Engagement

In the three years we have analysed political stories in Ireland, the most engaged with story hasn't been one of the few pieces of legislation introduced, or the number of inquiries or the new Taoiseach or even the recent risk of the Government dissolving. The most engaged with story has been the delay it took the Government to form.


In our global world, people attribute more importance on US politics, European policies and Brexit negotiations. Voters are more tuned into how global factors influence our lives more than local parish politics.

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Global first, local last

The three years have thrown up three dramatic news threads.

The first was the on-going terror attacks jeopardising European security, while the the refugee crisis tested our humanity. The second story holding our attention was Brexit, which has significant impacts on Ireland's future. The third event which distracted us from local politics was the election of the US President. Historically, Ireland welcomed the Clintons and subsequently Obama, so this story shook our US-Irish relations.


We are global

While protectionism and nationalism has risen in other countries, Ireland continues to value globalisation. We work for foreign national companies, we have siblings working abroad and we treat European flights like buses to the next town. We acknowledge that Ireland is but a mere island in a global village and world news is more important in our daily life.

Government Stability?

Going into 2018, local politics is not engaging Irish people. As a result, half the population believe they are not doing enough to address major societal problems including health and housing.

One in two people believe an election should be called next year. This group tends to be younger, the next generation. The current Governments has never been the most stable, so a 2018 election could be on the cards. 

Lessons towards 2020

Firstly, Irish people are quick to share what their needs are. These need states can change quickly. Irish organisations, business and Government should listen to people intently and empathically respond to these needs.

Secondly, politicians and business and community leaders need to understand that people have greater concerns than local matters. The future consumer is globally connected and is as quick to buy a brand, or ideology abroad as it is to support local.

Staying on top of what matters in Irish culture, fuelled by a global news, is key for any organisation to succeed in the future.