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Election Forecasting
British Columbia Provincial Election 2013
Voter Migration Matrix

developed by Prof. Werner Antweiler
Guess the probability with which a 2009 voter will vote for a particular party in 2013. The sum of each row in the table below must be equal to 1.000 precisely. Once you have completed your guess of the voter migration matrix, press the FORECAST button. The forecaster program will apply your voter migration matrix to the 2009 election results to find out which party will win in each riding. Leaving the matrix unchanged will display the 2009 election results. You can also display results riding by riding in descending order of the vote share to identify "safe" and "marginal" seats for individual parties.
Probability to migrate
from party in 2009 ...
... to party in 2013
B.C. Liberal PartyLIB
New Democratic PartyNDP
B.C. Green PartyGP
Conservative PartyCP
All Other PartiesOTR
Show results for individual constituencies:
Predict election outcome for
Press to apply your voter migration matrix.
Press to set the voter migration matrix to the identity matrix.

Elections in British Columbia employ a "first-past-the-post" voting system. Thus the prediction of the election result in terms of the seats distribution in the provincial legislature is based on a prediction of the election result in each constituency. The use of a voter migration matrix reflects the notion that voters change their opinion about candidates and parties in a similar way across the entire province. That is, a party that gains or loses vote in one constituency tends to gain or lose votes in other constituencies. In the simplest form, this "swing" can be applied across all constituencies.
The voter migration matrix can be used in a disaggregated way by restricting the migration to five regions (Metro Vancouver, Fraser Valley, Northern Interior, Southern Interior, and Vancouver Island). The migration matrix also allows for transitions between voters and non-voters, based on the number of registered voters during the last electon.
Voter migration analysis has to be carried out with consideration of the limitations of this method. First, the method does not reflect the change in population. Some children have reached voting age, some (mostly older) people have died, and other people have moved to B.C. or have moved away from B.C. Second, transitions between voters and non-voters are difficult to predict because public opinion polls only poll the current electorate and typically do not report whether someone has voted in the last election or not, or if they intend to abstain. Third, the voter migration matrix is applied identically across all constituencies or across regions. This ignores constituency-specific factors (for example incumbency).

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