Matthew Goodwin

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Matthew Goodwin
Dr Matthew Goodwin - Chatham House 2011.jpg
Goodwin at Chatham House in 2011
Matthew James Goodwin

(1981-12-17) 17 December 1981 (age 39)
Academic background
Alma mater
Doctoral advisorRoger Eatwell
Academic work
DisciplinePolitical science
Institutions Edit this at Wikidata

Matthew James Goodwin (born 17 December 1981) is a British academic who is currently Director of the Centre for UK Prosperity at the Legatum Institute, Professor of Politics in the School of Politics and International Relations at the University of Kent.

Early life and education[edit]

He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree with first-class honours in politics and contemporary history from the University of Salford in 2003 and a Master of Arts degree in political science from the University of Western Ontario in 2004, and completed his Doctor of Philosophy degree under the supervision of Roger Eatwell at the University of Bath in 2007.[1]

Academic career[edit]

Goodwin worked as Associate Professor of Politics at the University of Nottingham from 2010 to 2015, and Research Fellow at the Institute for Political and Economic Governance (IPEG) at the University of Manchester from 2008 to 2010. Since 2015, he has been Professor of Politics at the University of Kent.[2] Goodwin is also a former senior fellow for the think tank UK in a Changing Europe.

Since January 2021 he has been Director of the Centre for UK Prosperity at the London based think tank the Legatum Institute.[3]

His research focuses on British politics, radical-right politics, and Euroscepticism.[4]

He is the co-editor of The New Extremism in 21st Century Britain (Routledge),[5] and co-author (with Roger Eatwell) of National Populism: The Revolt Against Liberal Democracy.[6] He is also the author of New British Fascism: Rise of the British National Party (Routledge)[7] and co-author (with Robert Ford) of Revolt on the Right: Explaining Support for the Radical Right in Britain (Routledge, 2014). His research has appeared in the New Statesman,[8] The Guardian,[9] The Westminster Hour[10] and Prospect magazine.[11]

On 27 May 2017, he predicted that Labour would not reach 38 per cent of the vote in the 2017 general election and he would eat his book if they did.[12] Labour did and, on 10 June, Goodwin chewed one page out of his book, live on Sky News.[13]

Some researchers have criticised the works of Goodwin and Eric Kaufmann for encouraging the "normalisation of far right ideas."[14] In response, Goodwin and Kaufmann defended the validity of their methods and conclusions.[15]

Goodwin is on the advisory panel of the "Free Speech Union", a group founded by Toby Young that "stands up for the speech rights of its members"[16] and "fights Twitter 'Witch-Hunts'".[17]


In addition to academic and popular articles, Goodwin has thus far co-authored four books. His fifth is in the works.

Revolt on the Right (2014)[edit]

  • Ford, Robert; Goodwin, Matthew (2014). Revolt on the Right: Explaining Support for the Radical Right in Britain. Routledge. ISBN 9780415661508.

This "sparky academic study of the rise of Ukip" was selected by The Guardian as one of the best politics books of 2014,[18] and was named as Paddy Power political book of the year for 2015.[19] Writing in the Financial Times, Kiran Stacey described it as "rich in analytical data" and containing "the occasional anecdotal gem",[20] while in The Spectator Vernon Bogdanor wrote that "This rigorous analysis of the rise of Ukip is the most important books on British politics for years".[21]

UKIP (2015)[edit]

Writing in The Times, Philip Collins said that "Goodwin and Milazzo tell their tale with brio and a fine journalistic eye for the good story" and that "they are particularly good on the Ukip threat to Labour".[22]

Brexit (2017)[edit]

  • Clarke, Harold; Goodwin, Matthew; Whiteley, Paul (2017). Brexit: Why Britain Voted to Leave the European Union. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 9781316605042.

This "illuminating analysis of the many factors that swayed the referendum" was selected by Danny Dorling as Times Higher Education book of the week.[23]

National Populism (2018)[edit]

  • Eatwell, Roger; Goodwin, Matthew (2018). National Populism: The Revolt Against Liberal Democracy. Pelican Books. ISBN 9780241312001.

This book attempts to explain national populism using a '4D model': destruction of the national culture due to large-scale international migration; deprivation of opportunities due to globalization and in the post-industrial economy with its frequent disruptions and slow growth; growing distrust by working-class and rural voters who feel increasingly alienated by liberal cosmopolitan city-dwelling political and media elites; and de-alignment from traditional allegiances, which can be seen in high levels of voter volatility, or people switching from one party to another between elections.[24][25]

This England[edit]

A fifth book, This England: Nation, Identity and Belonging is scheduled for publication by Pelican Books in 2021.[26]


In 2014, aged 33, Goodwin was awarded the Richard Rose Prize by the Political Studies Association, which is given to one early career academic each year for their contribution to research.[27]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Matthew Goodwin". The Conversation. Retrieved 7 January 2021.
  2. ^ "Professor Matthew Goodwin". Chatham House. 2016. Retrieved 6 October 2016.
  3. ^ "Legatum Institute launches new Centre for UK Prosperity". Legatum Institute. 22 October 2020. Retrieved 16 February 2021.
  4. ^ "Matthew Goodwin". School of Politics and International Relations, University of Nottingham. Archived from the original on 15 July 2012.
  5. ^ "The New Extremism in 21st Century Britain". Routledge. 22 February 2010. Retrieved 17 January 2012.
  6. ^ Cowley, Jason (21 October 2018). "Review: National Populism: The Revolt Against Liberal Democracy by Roger Eatwell and Matthew Goodwin – it's not going away any time soon". The Times. Retrieved 2 November 2018.
  7. ^ Goodwin, Matthew (28 April 2011). "New British Fascism: Rise of the British National Party". Routledge. Retrieved 17 January 2012.
  8. ^ "The BNP's breakthrough". New Statesman. London. 16 April 2009. Retrieved 17 January 2012.
  9. ^ Goodwin, Matthew; Ford, Robert (13 February 2009). "Prejudice is declining, but there is still huge support for the BNP". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 17 January 2012.
  10. ^ "BNP". BBC News. 25 July 2010. Retrieved 17 January 2012.
  11. ^ Goodwin, Matthew (July 2010). "Life after Griffin". Prospect. London. Retrieved 17 January 2012.
  12. ^ "Matthew Goodwin on Twitter".
  13. ^ Media Mole (11 June 2017). "Watch: Politics expert Matthew Goodwin eats his own book on live TV after underestimating Labour". New Statesman. London.
  14. ^ Smith, Evan (30 April 2020). No Platform: A History of Anti-Fascism, Universities and the Limits of Free Speech. Routledge. ISBN 978-1138591677. Concerned about the increasing normalisation of far right ideas, over 200 scholars wrote an open letter criticising the event organised by Goodwin and Kaufmann
  15. ^ Goodwin, Matthew; Kaufmann, Eric (8 December 2018). "What Happened When We Tried to Debate Immigration". Quillette. Retrieved 14 April 2020.
  16. ^ "Who We Are".
  17. ^ Simpson, John. "Free speech union fights Twitter 'witch‑hunts'" – via
  18. ^ Lewis, Helen (3 December 2014). "The best politics books of 2014". The Guardian. Retrieved 9 August 2020.
  19. ^ Flood, Alison (29 January 2015). "Two new books explain the Brexit revolt". The Guardian. Retrieved 9 August 2020.
  20. ^ Stacey, Kiran (14 March 2014). "'Revolt on the Right', by Robert Ford and Matthew Goodwin". Financial Times. Retrieved 9 August 2020.
  21. ^ Bogdanor, Vernon (5 April 2014). "White, blue-collar, grey-haired rebels". The Spectator. Retrieved 9 August 2020.
  22. ^ Collins, Philip (28 November 2015). "UKIP: Inside the campaign to redraw the map of British politics by Matthew Goodwin and Caitlin Milazzo". The Times. Retrieved 9 August 2020.
  23. ^ Dorling, Danny (4 May 2017). "Brexit: Why Britain Voted to Leave the European Union, by Harold D. Clarke, Matthew Goodwin and Paul Whiteley". Times Higher Education. Retrieved 9 August 2020.
  24. ^ "Two new books explain the Brexit revolt". Britain. The Economist. 3 November 2018. Retrieved 29 February 2020.
  25. ^ Goodwin, Matthew (3 October 2018). "Why national populism is here to stay". Politics. The New Statesman. Retrieved 29 February 2020.
  26. ^ Comerford, Ruth (29 May 2020). "Penguin Press to publish Goodwin on England and identity". The Bookseller. Retrieved 9 August 2020.
  27. ^ "Conference Highlights 2014". Political Studies Association.

External links[edit]