Showing posts with label scotland. Show all posts
Showing posts with label scotland. Show all posts

Friday, June 24, 2016

UK Votes to Quit EU: Map of How Britain Voted in the Brexit Referendum

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By Evan Centanni

UK Brexit vote map: Map of election results in Britain's June 2016 referendum on leaving the European Union (EU). Continuous red-to-blue color scheme gives a more honest depiction of the similarities between different election districts. Colorblind accessible.
Map of election results in the UK's "Brexit" referendum. Modified by Evan Centanni from Wikimedia map by Mirrorme22, Nilfanion, TUBS, and Sting (CC BY-SA).
UK Votes to Quit EU
The results are in for yesterday's referendum on UK membership in the European Union, and the winner is "Leave". Brits voted by a margin of 52% to 48% in favor of exiting the European Union, making a "Brexit" (British exit from the EU) more or less guaranteed in the coming years. Britain will become the first member country ever to leave the EU, and the British overseas territory of Gibraltar is expected to get pulled out with it.

Learn More: Brexit: 9 Geography Facts You Should Know About the Referendum and Britain's EU Membership

Who Voted to Stay
Voter tendencies varied a lot from place to place. Support for the "Remain" side was strong across Scotland, culturally Irish parts of Northern Ireland, the London area, and a handful of other cities in England (led by Cambridge, Oxford, and Brighton).

By far the greatest show of support for Remain was a win by 96% in Gibraltar - which isn't even in the UK proper, but got to vote because of its unique status as a British external territory that's in the EU.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Maps of How Scotland's Regions Really Voted

Good geographers know that maps can lie to you. Every map emphasizes some aspects of a place at the expense of others, giving it a lot of power to lead careless readers astray. Maps of Scotland's recent independence referendum are misleading us about the reality, even if not intentionally.

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Map of results in Scotland's September 18, 2014 independence referendum. Voters were polled on whether or not to separate from the UK. Map shows relative proportion of yes and no votes for each of Scotland's council areas, using a gradient rather than contrasting colors for small differences.
Map by Evan Centanni, based on blank map by TUBS and NordNordWest (CC BY-SA)
By Evan Centanni

Misleading Maps
By now you've probably heard the results of Scotland's independence referendum: voters chose "no" by a solid margin of 55% to 45%. Check out our previous article to learn more about what would have happened if Scotland had voted "yes".

Maps like this one from the BBC and this one from Wikipedia have popped up since the results came out, showing how each of Scotland's council areas voted. Most of the country is in red for "no", with a few "yes" areas in green.

But if one area went 51% for "yes", and another 51% for "no", those two areas actually voted almost identically - yet contrasting red/green maps make us feel like they're polar opposites (not to mention that one-in-thirty readers has trouble seeing the difference between red and green).

How the Councils Really Voted
Whether each area's people voted just over or just under 50% in favor isn't actually that important. What matters is how far the balance was tipped in each region. This is not the U.S. presidential election, where the final vote is actually made by delegates obligated to go by the majority in each state. All the votes across Scotland were pooled together to determine the result, so which side of the 50-yard line each area came out on has no effect .

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Scottish Independence Poll: What is Scotland, and What Will Happen if it Votes to Leave the UK?

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Map of Scotland. On September 18, 2014, Scotland will vote on whether to leave the UK and become an independent country.
Map of Scotland by Eric Gaba (source). License: CC BY-SA
By Evan Centanni

Scotland's Independence Vote
On Thursday (September 18), residents of Scotland will vote in a referendum on whether to leave the United Kingdom (UK). But is Scotland a country already? What will happen if voters choose "yes" in the referendum? And what other changes would this bring to Scotland and the UK's political geography? Read on for the answers to these questions and more!

Crash Course: History of Scotland
Scotland is the name of the northern third of Great Britain, the main island of the UK, which is shared with England to the south and Wales to the southwest. It originated as the Kingdom of Alba, an independent Celtic country that was unified around the year 900.

It remained an independent kingdom throughout the Middle Ages, gradually absorbing Anglo-Saxon culture from the south until it came to be ruled by English-speaking monarchs, who called it "Scots" or "Scotland" after the Latin name for the Gaels, the predominant Celtic people of the region.