From polls to votes to seats: forecasting the 2010 British general election

Fisher, Stephen D., Ford, Robert, Jennings, Will, Pickup, Mark and Wlezien, Christopher (2011) From polls to votes to seats: forecasting the 2010 British general election. [in special issue: Special Symposium: Electoral Forecasting Symposium] Electoral Studies, 30, (2), 250-257. (doi:10.1016/j.electstud.2010.09.005).


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This paper outlines and discusses techniques for three stages in forecasting parliamentary seats from British opinion polls: adjusting and aggregating published vote-intention figures from across different polls; forecasting how public opinion might change before election day; and predicting the seat totals from the forecasted election-day vote shares. Specifically, we consider a state-space model for opinion polls which correct for house effects and other sources of survey error, the estimation of the historical relationship between polls and the election-day share of the vote, and a probabilistic approach to predicting the winner in each constituency.

Item Type: Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi:10.1016/j.electstud.2010.09.005
ISSNs: 0261-3794 (print)
1873-6890 (electronic)
Keywords: british elections, forecasting elections, opinion polls, state-space model, house effects
Subjects: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe) > JN101 Great Britain
Q Science > QA Mathematics
Divisions : Faculty of Social and Human Sciences > Social Sciences > Politics & International Relations
ePrint ID: 336581
Accepted Date and Publication Date:
June 2011Published
Date Deposited: 30 Mar 2012 09:06
Last Modified: 31 Mar 2016 14:25

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