Beyond Opinion Polls: Predicting the Outcome of Scottish Independence Referendum

8 Pages Posted: 24 Jul 2014

See all articles by Jan Nalaskowski

Jan Nalaskowski

Old Dominion University - Graduate Program in International Studies

Date Written: January 10, 2014

Abstract

This paper introduces modeling assessment of preparations for Scottish independence referendum. Taking into account data retrieved from opinion polls and general elections it proposes four classes of agents communicating with each other within the framework of the Social Judgment Theory and during simulation consisting of 1460 days. The agent-based model aims to test various statements formulated by commentators of the referendum event. There are many opinions on how both pro and anti-independence campaigns should look like, what parts of electorate should they focus on and what are the real chances of independence to be chosen, facing relatively constant lack of support for the case indicated by opinion polls. The main findings are that under current distribution of agents the intensity and scope of pro-independence campaign as well as the choice of its recipients do not really matter, as there is virtually no chance for independence to be chosen.

Keywords: Scottish independence referendum, independence referenda, political campaigns, Social Judgment Theory

Suggested Citation

Nalaskowski, Jan, Beyond Opinion Polls: Predicting the Outcome of Scottish Independence Referendum (January 10, 2014). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2470473 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2470473

Jan Nalaskowski (Contact Author)

Old Dominion University - Graduate Program in International Studies ( email )

Norfolk, VA 23529
United States

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