In Focus: May 2015 – A Climate Change in UK Politics

Political InsightFollowing the full cartographic roundup of this year’s general election earlier this week, here comes a related piece of research. In an article for the “In Focus” section of Political Insight (September 2015, Volume 6, Issue 2) Danny Dorling and I plotted the geography of an unexpected Conservative General Election victory.
What happened of most importance in 2015 was the rapid acceleration of a trend that has been underway in UK voting since 1979 and can be seen as having its origins in the 1960s: the increasingly uneven spread of Tory voters. The graph shows the minimal proportion of Conservative voters who would have to move seat within Britain if the Conservatives were to have an even distribution of the vote in that part of the UK at each and every General Election held between 1915 and 2015. In 2015 that proportion peaked at 19.9 per cent. When the UK becomes more polarised social pressures rise, people begin to separate more and more in their views, incomes and locations.

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Electoral Doctrine: Thirty-nine maps of voting

The 2015 UK general election is history and it seems as all stories have been told about the unexpected victory of the Conservative party. But the picture of the election is far more diverse than it seems and the political landscapes are more polarised than a conventional map of the first votes can show.
This poster, submitted as an entry to the joint BCS-SoC ‘Mapping Together’ Conference starting tomorrow in York, presents the electoral doctrine of the 2015 election. It is a cartographic roundup of the beliefs of the electorate in thirty-nine images that tell the full story of a shift in political paradigms that will shape the debates for the elections to come:

Poster: Electoral Doctrine - 39 Maps of Voting
(click for larger version)

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Changing Political Landscapes of Britain

Three days after the UK general election, the formation of a new (old) Conservative government is in full preparation with few new faces on the one side, and soul searching and the search for new faces on the other side of the political spectrum. There has also been plenty of joy for map lovers (even if they may not be equally happy with the outcome), including my own map series of the winning parties in each constituency. The following map series uses the same approach but shows further details on how things have changed in the political landscape of the country compared to the 2010 general election:

Map views of the 2015 General Election in the United Kingdom
(click for larger version)

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In Focus: The General Election 2010

Political InsightA map showing the detailed results of this year’s General Election in Great Britain is now featured in the “In Focus” section of Political Insight journal (September 2010, Volume 1, Issue 2). The accompanying article written by Danny Dorling and me includes a brief analysis of the swings in the new Parliament at Westminster.

Here are the bibliographic details:
Election Map 2010 Thumbnail image

  • Dorling, D. and Hennig, B. D. (2010). In Focus: General Election 2010. Political Insight1 (2): 72.
    Article online (Wiley)

More election maps can be found here.
The content on this page has been created by Benjamin D. Hennig. You are free use the material under Creative Commons conditions (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0); please contact me for further details. I also appreciate a message if you used my maps somewhere else. High resolution and customized maps are available on request.

General Election 2010: The swings that did matter

We have seen and heard a lot about the election outcome, not only on this website (here, here, here, here and here), but one more map: The following hexagon map (see here for a comparison of the different map types we are using) shows the changes that have actually taken place in the constituencies. The colour scheme indicates where seats have changes between the parties, and where they remained the same. For a clearer picture, the national parties in Scotland (SNP) and Waled (PC) have been put together under one colour.
This map is also available as a kmz file for GoogleEarth and other compatible software, which allows to zoom in and identify constituencies (a geographical version of the map is also included in the file).
GoogleEarth kmz file Click here to download the kmz file (15MB)

General Election 2010: Hexagon map of the results and changes in seats
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General Election 2010: Different views

The following three map show different ways of mapping the British election results in comparison. The left map uses a traditional projection (using the British National Grid), which represents the geographical area and thus overemphasises the vote of rural areas (making blue much more dominant than the real results are). The map in the middle uses hexagons to represent the constituencies, so that this map distorts land area in favor of a representation of seats in the British Parliament. This kind of visualisation has recently become very popular in the media and is now a common feature on most online election maps (like the BBC one). The right map shows the election results on the gridded population cartogram, which has been shown in more detail on this website before. Here the projection puts the population distribution in focus, so that this reflects best how many people are represented by a certain party. The overall picture is more similar to the constituency-based map than the land area map, however, is still shows some differences as constituencies are not exactly the same population size (for administrative reasons, but not least also because not all people in an area are entitled to vote). Each of the maps is useful for itself depending on what you want to know about the election outcome, as all three are telling a very different story of it.

Mapping the General Election 2010 in Great Britain(click for larger view)

The content on this page has been created by Benjamin D. Hennig. You are free use the material under Creative Commons conditions (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0); please contact me for further details. I also appreciate a message if you used my maps somewhere else. High resolution and customized maps are available on request.