Election Administration Data in the United Kingdom

In the United States, the Election Assistance Commission collects data on the administration of federal elections through the Election Administration and Voting Survey (EAVS). Data from EAVS are essential to understanding how states and localities run elections and are a key part of Pew’s Elections Performance Index. On the other side of the Atlantic, the United Kingdom Electoral Commission gathers a large amount of similar elections data.

Both the U.K. and U.S. data sets include information on registered voters; total participation; and mail ballots sent, returned, and rejected. Although complete data from the May 2015 election are not yet available, those from previous U.K. elections show that, as in the U.S., voting by mail is on the rise, with nearly 1 in 5 ballots cast by mail in 2010, compared with 1 in 20 in 2001.

The U.K. Electoral Commission also collects data on the total overvotes and undervotes cast and the number of individuals who tried to register to vote after the deadline had passed. An overvote occurs when a person casts more than one vote in a single contest, and an undervote happens when a person does not vote for every contest on the ballot.

Data sets are available to download, and the commission issues a report describing and analyzing the data after each election, noting trends and changes. Additionally, the commission has conducted a number of public opinion surveys about voter experiences and detailed assessments of its voter registration system, and it has tackled the challenging task of estimating the total cost of running an election.

Follow us on Twitter using #electiondata and get the latest data dispatches, research, and news by subscribing today.

Spotlight on Mental Health

Composite image of modern city network communication concept

Learn the Basics of Broadband from Our Limited Series

Sign up for our four-week email course on Broadband Basics

Quick View

How does broadband internet reach our homes, phones, and tablets? What kind of infrastructure connects us all together? What are the major barriers to broadband access for American communities?

Pills illustration
Pills illustration

What Is Antibiotic Resistance—and How Can We Fight It?

Sign up for our four-week email series The Race Against Resistance.

Quick View

Antibiotic-resistant bacteria, also known as “superbugs,” are a major threat to modern medicine. But how does resistance work, and what can we do to slow the spread? Read personal stories, expert accounts, and more for the answers to those questions in our four-week email series: Slowing Superbugs.

Explore Pew’s new and improved
Fiscal 50 interactive

Your state's stats are more accessible than ever with our new and improved Fiscal 50 interactive:

  • Maps, trends, and customizable charts
  • 50-state rankings
  • Analysis of what it all means
  • Shareable graphics and downloadable data
  • Proven fiscal policy strategies


Welcome to the new Fiscal 50

Key changes include:

  • State pages that help you keep track of trends in your home state and provide national and regional context.
  • Interactive indicator pages with highly customizable and shareable data visualizations.
  • A Budget Threads feature that offers Pew’s read on the latest state fiscal news.

Learn more about the new and improved Fiscal 50.