The EU referendum: surname diversity and voting patterns

Written by Mario Cortina Borja, Julian Stander and Luciana Dalla Valle on . Posted in Politics

An interesting by-product of the UK’s referendum on membership of the EU has been the wide variety of data analyses and visualisations to explain and add context, both before and after the results (for examples, see here, here and here). However, one of the few aspects that has not been analysed is how surname diversity in districts relates to referendum voting patterns.

Chilcot, part 2: How Tony Blair fumbled Iraq's child mortality statistics

Written by Michael Spagat on . Posted in Politics

At a dramatic moment in Tony Blair’s testimony before the Iraq Inquiry back in 2010, Sir John Chilcot asked him if the invasion of Iraq had been good for the Iraqi people. Blair responded in the affirmative – and his main argument was that the invasion had saved the lives of tens of thousands of Iraqi children who would otherwise have perished at the hands of Saddam Hussein’s brutal regime.

EU referendum – how the polls got it wrong again

Written by John Curtice on . Posted in Politics

Estimating the likely outcome of the referendum on the UK’s membership of the EU was always going to be a challenge for the opinion polls. In a general election they have years of experience as to what does and does not work on which to draw when estimating the level of support for the various political parties. They still make mistakes, as was evident last year, but at least they can learn from them. In a one-off referendum they have no previous experience on which to draw — and there is certainly no guarantee that what has worked in a general election will prove effective in what is a very different kind of contest.

Forecast error: European referenda, past and present

Written by Timothy Martyn Hill on . Posted in Politics

Should we stay or should we go? That is the question being put to voters on 23 June as the UK holds a referendum on its membership of the European Union. It is an important decision: voting to leave will bring about important changes to the economies of both the UK and the EU. Those in favour of ‘Brexit’ believe the outcome will be positive in the long term; those against fear the effects on whatever timescale.

The EU referendum - one week to go: extracting insights from Facebook using R

Written by Julian Stander, Luciana Dalla Valle, John Eales, Andrea Baldino and Mario Cortina Borja on . Posted in Politics

A referendum is being held on 23 June to provide an answer to the question “Should the United Kingdom remain a member of the European Union or leave the European Union?”.1 Registered British, Irish and Commonwealth citizens over 18 who are resident in the UK, along with some others, are able to vote. The main groups campaigning for the UK to remain in or leave the EU are called, respectively, Britain Stronger in Europe2 and Vote Leave.3 Both these groups are making extensive use of social media to pursue their campaigns, including Facebook.4 Their respective Facebook pages are here and here.

Higher pay, lower income: the National Living Wage and benefit cuts

Written by Donald Hirsch on . Posted in Politics

The introduction of a “National Living Wage (NLW)” at the beginning of this month marks the most significant moment in UK wages policy since the advent of the National Minimum Wage (NMW) in 1999. Looked at technically, the NLW is no more than a supplement to the NMW for over-25s, adding a further subdivision to existing rates for apprentices, under 18s, 18-20 year olds and over-21s. However, it is a different animal to the NMW both in its ambitions and in the basis for setting the rate.

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