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Geolocation and voting: Candidate-voter distance effects on party choice in the 2010 UK general election in England

Arzheimer, K and Evans, J 2012, 'Geolocation and voting: Candidate-voter distance effects on party choice in the 2010 UK general election in England' , Political Geography, 31 (5) , pp. 301-310. (In Press)

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    Abstract

    The effect of geographical distance between candidate and voter on vote-likelihood in the UK is essentially untested. In systems where constituency representatives vie for local inhabitants' support in elections, candidates living closer to a voter would be expected to have a greater probability of receiving that individual's support, other things being equal. In this paper, we present a first test of this concept using constituency data (specifically, notice of poll address data) from the British General Election of 2010 and the British Election Survey, together with geographical data from Ordnance Survey and Royal Mail, to test the hypothesis that candidate distance matters in voters' choice of candidate. Using a conditional logit model, we find that the distance between voter and candidates from the three main parties (Conservative, Labour and Liberal Democrat) matters in English constituencies, even when controlling for strong predictors of vote choice, such as party feeling and incumbency advantage.

    Item Type: Article
    Uncontrolled Keywords: Voting, General Election, Uk, Political geography, Geolocation
    Themes: Subjects outside of the University Themes
    Schools: Colleges and Schools > College of Arts & Social Sciences
    Colleges and Schools > College of Arts & Social Sciences > School of Humanities, Languages & Social Sciences
    Journal or Publication Title: Political Geography
    Publisher: Elsevier
    Refereed: Yes
    ISSN: 0962-6298
    Depositing User: JAJ Evans
    Date Deposited: 05 Oct 2012 14:12
    Last Modified: 20 Aug 2013 18:31
    URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/26365

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