Visiting Senior Research Fellow
David Cowling is a political opinion polling specialist. In 1999, he joined the BBC as Editor, Political Research, managing a small team of researchers who provide extensive background briefings for journalists and programme-makers. He has specialised in opinion poll research – both interpreting published polls as well as assisting in the commissioning of polls by the BBC itself – and in all forms of elections – local, parliamentary, European, Scottish Parliament, Welsh and Northern Ireland Assemblies, directly-elected Mayors and Police & Crime Commissioners. He has played an active role in general election television results programmes since 1987 and in each one has been closely involved in the development and production of exit polls. Prior to his career at the BBC, David worked in the Private Office of the Leader of the Greater London Council from 1974 to 1977, before becoming Special Adviser to the Rt. Hon. Peter Shore, Secretary of State for the Environment from 1977 to 1979. Between 1979 and 1986 he worked as Mr. Shore’s assistant in the House of Commons during his time as Shadow Foreign Secretary and Shadow Chancellor.