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General Election Forecasts in the United Kingdom: A Political Economy Model
Electoral Studies (2004)
  • Michael S Lewis-Beck, University of Iowa
  • Richard Nadeau
  • Eric Bélanger
With the notable exception of Mughan (1987), forecasting attempts in the United Kingdom have been solely concerned with developing popularity functions. This paper formulates a vote function model to forecast general elections in the UK. The model relies on three independent variables: approval of the government’s record, inflation, and a variable controlling for the “cost of ruling.” The model is estimated over the period 1955–1997 using a substantial six-month lead time. It performs reasonably well, and offers a plausible and parsimonious explanation of government vote support. The vote function is used to generate a forecast of the next British general election. It clearly predicts a majority government for Labour, assuming the election would be held in Spring 2001.
  • Forecasting models,
  • Vote function,
  • Political economy,
  • British elections
Publication Date
June, 2004
Citation Information
Michael S Lewis-Beck, Richard Nadeau and Eric Bélanger. "General Election Forecasts in the United Kingdom: A Political Economy Model" Electoral Studies Vol. 23 Iss. 2 (2004)
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