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Centre for Elections and Representation Studies Scottish Election Study 2011

Scottish Election Study: ‘The 2011 Scottish Parliament Elections: Understanding the Outcome’

  • Dr Christopher Carman, University of Strathclyde
  • Dr Robert Johns, University of Essex
  • Prof James Mitchell, University of Strathclyde

The 2011 Scottish Election Study (SES)was led by a team from the Centre for Elections and Representation Studies in the School of Government and Public Policy.

The survey, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), was conducted over the internet by YouGov and based on a large and representative sample of Scottish electors. The SES surveys respondents both before and after polling day in order to draw a detailed picture of their decisions about whether and how to vote.

In addition to shining a light on one of the most remarkable elections in the history of the Scottish Parliament, the 2011 SES concentrated on discerning how the Scottish electorate attributes responsibility for public policies across the Scottish and UK political systems.

The SES also asked respondents their preferences for a wide range of constitutional options, public policies and governing arrangements.

This one-day event brought together academics, elected officials, civil servants, journalists, civic society representatives and interested individuals to discuss some of the initial findings presented by the three SES co-investigators.

Additionally, the SES team contributed a summary of initial findings to LSE’s British Politics and Policy Blog, finding that although the SNP won an overall majority in the parliament, Scots voters actually did not move further towards secession and independence.