Latest Issue

A clue to improved polling accuracy?

Don’t just measure preference, measure what underlies it

By Martin Boon  

Maybe you’ve noticed, politics is increasingly tribal—and emotional. Anguish, hope, fury, disappointment. These are the calling cards of Remainers, Brexiteers, socialists, neo-liberals, conservatives—indeed any of us with a political label.

There is a clear problem here for political pollsters. How do the answers that our respondents provide relate to their own underlying emotional engagement? If we are measuring preference but not the emotional intensity behind it, is that harming the usefulness of our data?

We discussed a potential solution in Prospect a year ago and now know more. The key might be using…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to

More From Prospect