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British Election Study: 1969-1970, February 1974 Panel (ICPSR 7869)

Principal Investigator(s): Crewe, Ivor, University of Essex; Saerlvik, Bo, University of Essex; Alt, James, University of Essex


This data collection is part of a continuing series of surveys of the British electorate, begun by David Butler and Donald Stokes at Nuffield College, Oxford, in 1963, and continued at the University of Essex. This panel study about the British general election of February 1974 was conducted with a sample of electors in 80 constituencies who had previously been interviewed twice, once in 1969 and again after the 1970 general election. This data collection contains information gathered in the third wave of the study, known as the February 1974 cross-section panel survey. It includes data gathered from participants who were interviewed in 1970, of whom about half had also been interviewed in 1969. As with other surveys in the series, electors in Northern Ireland and the Scottish Highlands and Islands were excluded from the sampling frame. Interviewed in March-April 1974, respondents answered questions relating to the mass media (e.g., attention to newspapers and television and perceived bias in newspapers), their first and second choices in the 1974 general election, and their opinions of the Conservative, Labour, Liberal, Scottish Nationalist, and Plaid Cymru political parties (e.g., perceived difference among parties, knowledge of party position/record, party identification, and the strength of party preference). Respondents were asked for their views on a range of social issues relating to domestic and foreign affairs, with emphasis on the economy and the Common Market. Respondents were then asked how the parties stood on each issue, and how much that influenced the respondent's vote. Some of the issues included rising prices, strikes in general, the miners' strike, taxation, the Common Market, social services, nationalization, wage control, and the amount of power held by unions and by big business. Respondents were also asked for their perceptions of class conflict and their predictions for Britain's future economy. Finally, respondents rated the political parties and several politicians, and commented on the effect of government on their own well-being. Background information includes age, sex, marital status, place of residence during childhood, subjective class, forced subjective class, family class, tenure, type and length of residence, employment status, degree of responsibility in and training for job (respondent and spouse), experience of unemployment in household, income trade union membership (respondent and spouse), and socioeconomic group.

Series: British General Election Survey Series

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Study Description


Crewe, Ivor, Bo Saerlvik, and James Alt. BRITISH ELECTION STUDY: 1969-1970, FEBRUARY 1974 PANEL. ICPSR07869-v1. London, England: Social and Community Planning Research/Colchester, England: Ivor Crewe, et al., University of Essex [producers], 1974. Colchester, England: ESRC Data Archive/Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributors], 2006-01-16. https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR07869.v1

Persistent URL: https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR07869.v1

Export Citation:

  • RIS (generic format for RefWorks, EndNote, etc.)
  • EndNote XML (EndNote X4.0.1 or higher)


This study was funded by:

  • Social Science Research Council

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:    economic conditions, European Economic Community, government performance, international relations, life satisfaction, mass media, national elections, personal finances, political attitudes, political change, political influences, political issues, political parties, public opinion, social attitudes, social change, social issues, social values, socioeconomic status, voter attitudes, voting behavior, voting patterns

Geographic Coverage:    Great Britain, United Kingdom, Global

Time Period:   

  • 1974-03--1974-04

Date of Collection:   

  • 1974-03--1974-04

Universe:    The eligible British electorate living south of the Caledonian Canal and excluding Northern Ireland.

Data Type(s):    survey data

Data Collection Notes:

(1) There are 2,207 respondents in this dataset, comprising persons interviewed in either 1969 or 1970. If a respondent was not reinterviewed in 1974, his/her record was padded with missing data. (2) The first 18 of the 22 cards for each respondent are taken directly from POLITICAL CHANGE IN BRITAIN, 1969-1970 [ICPSR 7004], and are only documented by the codebook for that study. For a full description of the variables included therein, see ICPSR 7004. (3) Users are advised that the following studies were provided by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Survey Archive, University of Essex, England:

  • British Election Study: February 1974, Cross-Section (ICPSR 7868)
  • British Election Study: 1969-1970, February 1974 Panel (ICPSR 7869)
  • British Election Study: October 1974, Cross-Section (ICPSR 7870)
  • British Election Study: October 1974, Scottish Cross-Section (ICPSR 7871)
  • British Election Study: EEC Referendum Study, 1975 (ICPSR 7872)
  • British Election Study: May 1979, Cross Section (ICPSR 8196)
  • British Election Study: [June] 1983 (ICPSR 8409)
  • British Social Attitudes Survey, 1986 (ICPSR 8910)

(4) The data and accompanying documentation are disseminated, under an agreement with the UK Data Archive, exactly as they were received, without modification by ICPSR. This agreement also provides that ICPSR will disseminate these data only for use within member institutions.


Sample:    Respondents were selected into a multistage, self-weighting, stratified, probability sample.

Mode of Data Collection:    personal interview


Original ICPSR Release:   1984-06-19

Version History:

  • 2006-01-16 A PDF documentation file provided by the UK Data Archive has been made available with this collection.

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