What is a Student Panel?
A Student Panel is a group of 18-48 students, who are randomly selected to deliberate and make decisions on Policy Proposals. Similar to a jury system, we use a sortition process to ensure the students selected reflect the LSE student body and bring in their own lived experience when setting Union-wide policy. For example, the number of postgraduate students sitting on the panel will be proportional to the number of postgraduate students in the wider student body.
The panel members will be presented with Policy Proposals put forward by their fellow students. The policy proposers, plus any student who wishes to oppose the proposal, will have the opportunity to present their case to the panel. Experts, as well as people with lived experience of any issue being discussed, will also be invited to present their perspective on the proposal.
Panellists will have the opportunity to ask questions and discuss the proposal in depth together, before voting on whether they believe the proposal should pass. For more information on the different voting options of the Student Panel, and what the outcomes of each are, have a look at our Policy Proposal page.
If you would like to attend the Student Panel to hear what Policy Proposals have been put forward and what the student panellists discuss, then you are more than welcome to. The panel will be hosted in a hybrid format, so you can attend in person or online. However, Student Panel observers cannot input into the discussion or interact with the panellists in any way.
How CaN I Take Part in A Student Panel?
There are lots of different ways you can get involved in Panels! You can take part as a:
1. Policy Proposer
If you have an idea to improve life at LSE, you can submit your policy for review at an upcoming student panel. All the information you need is on this page.
2. Policy Opposer
If someone submits a policy to student panel that you disagree with, you can put yourself forward to oppose the policy. You would present your opposition case to the Student Panel, and the Panellists would be able to ask you questions.
You can view all the Policies that have been proposed by other students here. If you don't believe a policy should pass, please get in touch with us at email@example.com and we can talk you through becoming a Policy Opposer.
3. Expert Witness
Expert Witnesses are people who have expert knowledge on the policy area being discussed, or who have lived experience relevant to the policy. Expert Witnesses can be anyone, not just students, and they provide their perspective to the panellists after the Proposer and Opposer have both spoken. They can also be asked questions by the Panellists.
If you believe you, or someone you know, would be a helpful Expert Witness for an upcoming Policy Proposal, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can talk you through the next steps.
For every Student Panel we need a group of 18-48 students who are randomly selected to act as a representative sample of the student body. These panellists deliberate and make decisions on Policy Proposals. In return for their time, panellists receive a £40 voucher for each session they attend - and, of course, free pizza!
If you would like to put yourself forward to be selected for the next Student Panel, you just need to complete the selection survey sent out to students at the beginning of each year.
All students are welcome to attend any Student Panel as an Observer. This can be in person or online via Zoom (to receive the Zoom link, please sign up for a ticket on the Panel event page or message us at email@example.com).
In order to maintain the integrity of the Panel's democratic format, we ask Observers to please remain quiet and to not interact with the panellists.
6. Democracy Committee Member
The Democracy Committee are elected students entrusted to uphold the democratic integrity of the Union. A key aspect of their role is facilitating the smooth running of our Student Panels. This ranges from reviewing Policy Proposals as they are submitted, deciding which Policies progress to Student Panel (if we receive more than the maximum 6 which can be discussed at any one Panel), inviting Expert Witnesses, and chairing and facilitating the Panels themselves.
Democracy Committee Members are elected in Lent Term each year and receive an honorarium for their work throughout the year. You can find out more about nominating yourself for a Democracy Committee position here, or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to talk to a member of staff about elections.
Upcoming Panels and Deadlines
Autumn Term Student Panel 23/24
Deadline to submit policy: 9am, Monday 30th October 2023
Session 1: 5:30pm, Tuesday 14th November 2023, CBG 1.07
Session 2: There will be no Session 2 this term
Winter Term Student Panel 23/24
Deadline to submit policy: 9am, Tuesday 23rd January 2024
Session 1: 5pm, Tuesday 13th February 2024
Session 2: 5pm, Thursday 15th February 2024
Spring Term Student Panel 23/24
Deadline to submit policy: 9am, Tuesday 30th April 2024
Session 1: 5pm, Tuesday 21st May 2024
Session 2: 5pm, Thursday 23rd May 2024
Upcoming Student Panel Policy Proposals
The Policy Proposals going forward to the next Student Panel will be announced in Michaelmas Term.
If Policy Proposals are put forward to Town Hall and an all-student vote, you will be able to vote for them below:
There are no referenda running at the present time.