Understanding the public’s commitment to voting in a general election


As part of Ipsos MORI’s research in the run-up to the 2017 general election, we wanted to understand whether people were truly committed to going out to vote.

What we did:

An online IRT module of c 929 voters allowed us to test public perceptions of the leadership of the Conservatives and Labour parties, understanding of the parties’ Brexit policies and commitment to going out to vote.

Key insight:

Implicit Reaction Time testing highlighted the overclaim in ‘certainty to vote’ frequently exhibited by the general public in regular polling i.e. the difference in those who claim they are certain to vote, versus the number that actually cast a vote.


Emphatic responses regarding intention to vote, as revealed by IRT, are closer to reality than explicit ones. That only 37% of voters emphatically stated that they had ‘definitely decided who to vote for’ provided an early indication that the election result was not to be as simple as expected!


Learn more about Implicit Reaction Time (IRT)


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