Political polarization in the UK: measures and socioeconomic correlates

Publication type

Journal Article


Publication date

August 24, 2022


This paper evaluates the political polarization in the UK and analyzes its socioeconomic correlates based on detailed county-level panel data constructed from the British Household Panel Survey. Three different polarization measures, computed following different strands of the literature, are highly correlated and characterized by similar statistical properties, which implies they can be used interchangeably in the quantitative analysis. The empirical evaluation of the determinants of political polarization suggests that regional political polarization in the UK is positively associated with the variability of job status and negatively associated with an increase in the employment rate and an increase in the share of natives in the region. The findings of this paper fill the gaps in understanding the political polarization in the UK by clarifying its measurement, correlates, and trends.

Published in

Constitutional Political Economy







Open Access

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