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Why Britain Voted for Brexit: An Individual-Level Analysis of the 2016 Referendum Vote

Clarke, Harold, Goodwin, Matthew J., Whiteley, Paul (2017) Why Britain Voted for Brexit: An Individual-Level Analysis of the 2016 Referendum Vote. Parliamentary Affairs, 70 (3). pp. 439-464. ISSN 0031-2290. E-ISSN 1460-2482. (doi:10.1093/pa/gsx005) (KAR id:60902)

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This paper investigates forces that shaped the decisions voters made in the June 23, 2016 referendum on the UK's continued membership in the European Union. Using data gathered in a national panel survey conducted before and after the referendum, multivariate models informed by previous research on voting in major 'polity-shaping' referendums are used to assess factors affecting the choices voters made. Analyses document that both economic- and immigration-focused benefit-cost calculations strongly influenced voters' decisions. Combined with risk assessments, emotional reactions to EU membership and leader image cues, these calculations were major proximate forces driving referendum voting. National identities were at work too, operating further back in the set of forces affecting attitudes towards the EU. Taken together, the findings indicate that the narrow Brexit decision voters made on June 23rd reflected a complex mixture of calculations, emotions and cues

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1093/pa/gsx005
Uncontrolled keywords: Brexit, Benefits-costs, Risks, Leader cues, Immigration, European Union
Subjects: J Political Science
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Human and Social Sciences > School of Politics and International Relations
Depositing User: Matthew Goodwin
Date Deposited: 14 Mar 2017 10:03 UTC
Last Modified: 23 Feb 2022 11:32 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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