Manifesto & Mandate


the document in which a political party details what actions and programmes it intends to introduce if it is successful in the next election — a set of promises for future action.


the authority to govern, which a government

derives from an election victory. This means that it has the right to introduce its policies as stated in its manifesto. It also allows it to take decisions on other issues as they arise during its term of office, which could not have

been foreseen when the manifesto was produced

Case study:   Fulfilling a manifesto pledge: extending free childcare

In the Conservative manifesto of 2017  there was a promise to offer working parents of 3 and 4-year-olds 30 hours of free childcare a week instead of 15 hours.

This was primarily designed to increase the number of parents in work (and therefore paying taxes and contributing to the nation’s economy) who might otherwise not be able to afford the cost of additional childcare. It was also felt that some young children might benefit from the opportunities for socialisation and would be taught basic skills by nurseries or childminders. Only those earning less than £100,000 would be eligible. This scheme was rolled out and in operation by September 2017.

Manifesto policies and their  impact on Elections

Case study 1997 New Labour's manifesto in 1997 was significantly different from the past

Old Labour New Labour 

 Welfare: there was an emphasis on personal responsibility over a powerful centralised state. While commitment to the welfare state remained, New Labour stated that the rights to benefits came with responsibilities.

 Law and order: Labour promised to be ‘tough on crime and tough on the causes of crime’, alongside pledging zero tolerance towards anti-social behaviour and petty crime.

The election of 1997