Fantasy Frontbench is an interactive online tool that aims to make the process of politics and policy-making more engaging and accessible to the general public, especially young people. A twist on the popular fantasy football concept, the web app lets you create your own dream cabinet of 22 ministers, sorting and selecting them on key parameters such as education and experience, as well as how they have voted in parliament on major policy issues, ranging from updating Trident and NHS reform, to EU integration and university tuition fees. In 2018, UCL Public Policy became the official academic partner for the project.
Matthew Seren Smith is the founder of the project and a learning technologist at UCL, part of the Integrated Engineering Programme. Listen to Matt talk about the Fantasy Frontbench project as part of our Parliament and Me podcast series recoreded in 2017
Blog Competition - What would your top climate policy be?
Tell us the one policy you would implement to combat climate change, to be in with a chance of winning a £50 gift voucher or one of four runners up prizes. Your blog should explain what your policy would be, how it will make a difference, and why it would be the best policy. Entries should be no more than 600 words and aim to be interesting, engaging, thought provoking and accessible to all.
The best entries will be published on the UCL Public Policy and Fantasy Frontbench blogs.
Deadline extended until 2 November 2018
How to enter
Entries should be no more than 600 words and aim to be interesting, engaging, thought provoking and accessible to all.
The competition is open to all, including school pupils over the age of 12.
To help get you started you can read UCL’s 10 top tips on blog writing (PDF link), and can also test the readability of your blog here.
Please submit your article as a Word document in 12 point Arial or Verdana font, as part of a completed entry form.
The deadline for applications is 5.00pm, Friday 2 November 2018.
- Competition Rules
By submitting your entry, you agree to the following terms and conditions.
• The competition is open to anyone, and there are two entry options:
- school entry for pupils age 12-18 in full time education at a school or FE college
- general entry for those over 18.
• All articles entered in the competition ("entries") must be previously unpublished work.
How to enter
• Entrants must use the online application form
• Entries that exceed the 600-word limit (excluding the title), or where the application form is illegible / incomplete, will be disqualified.
• Entries must be submitted as a Word document, in 12 point Arial or Verdana font.
• Entries must be the entrant's original work. Any evidence of plagiarism will result in disqualification.
• By submitting an entry to the competition, you confirm that you have the right to enter and have obtained all necessary consents and permissions.
• Only one entry is allowed per applicant.
• The deadline for all entries is 5.00pm Friday 2 November 2018
• The judging panel will select a shortlist that they consider (at their discretion) to be the best.
• The judges' decision is final and no negotiations or correspondence with entrants will be entered into.
• The prizes are non-exchangeable, and non-transferable.
Other terms and conditions
• Entries will not be returned.
• Details of the winner and runners-up will be announced on the competition website.
• Neither UCL or Fantasy Frontbench are obliged to publish any entry.
• Each entrant: (a) grants to UCL and Fantasy Frontbench perpetual, royalty-free, exclusive licence at no cost to copy, display, publish, broadcast, transmit and make available their entry to the public, in any format and media; (b) agrees that UCL and Fantasy Frontbench may (but are not obliged to) publish their name in connection with the competition.
• UCL may at any time modify or discontinue, temporarily or permanently, the competition.
• UCL will collect, store and use all personal data entrants provide in accordance with data protection legislation and the UCL data protection policy
Fantasy Frontbench Debates
As part of our new partnership, UCL Public Policy and Fantasy Frontbench are developing a series of debates on topical political issues.
The first debate in the series asked 'Should climate change be the UK’s top policy priority?'. The debate was chaired by Dr. Helen Czerski, Physicist, Oceanographer and Broadcaster, co-chaired by a youth representative and featured a number of high-profile speakers including Natalie Bennett, former leader of the Green Party, Ahir Shah political satirist and Edinburgh Comedy Award 'Best Show' 2017 nominee, Prof. Mark Maslin, UCL academic and author of Climate Change: A Very Short Introduction and Dr. Emily Shuckburgh, deputy head of the Polar Oceans Team at the British Antarctic Survey and co-author of Climate Change (A Ladybird Expert Book).