It’s up, it’s running, it’s ‘Live’ – LucidTalk’s first regular Quarterly BIG60 NI-Wide online poll. This is targeted to collate NI Opinions and NI’s views on politics, health, education, lifestyle, etc.. Called the BIG60 – It will last 60 Hours and close at 10pm this Wednesday 21st October. If you’re a Northern Ireland resident we would like to invite you to take part and give us your views. Here is the link to the survey-poll:


As per Market Research Standards best practice, your email details are stored separately on our systems and can’t be linked to your specific survey-poll answers, and/or any results or data recorded via this, or any other survey-poll project.
NB It is ‘One device – One vote’ i.e. one Vote/Survey per device (PC, laptop, tablet etc.) - if a second ‘vote’ is attempted from the same PC device it will immediately display a message that it is blocked. In addition, our systems track e.g. IP addresses, pseudo email addresses etc., and reject any possible ‘multiple votes’.
All collated data will be weighted and modelled (if applicable) in order to produce a representative view of NI Opinion. The survey-poll results will be published next week (week beginning 26th October).
If you have any queries, and/or would like further information about this project, and/or details of the Survey-Poll results publication, then please contact us on:
So come on and take part and give us your views!

LucidTalk – Recruiting for our NI-Wide Market Research Panel

LucidTalk are always on the look out for Northern Ireland (NI) residents to join our NI-Wide Market Research Panel. So if you’re interested in being invited to take part in our regular Online Poll projects, Focus Groups, and other market research projects, then you can register your interest here:   LucidTalk NI Market Research Panel – Register here

Taking part is fun, informative, and you earn ‘LT points’ for participating in each project which can be saved up for shopping vouchers, restaurant awards etc.

So come on board and help us determine what NI really thinks!

Our Big90 Online Poll Results and Analysis

Hopefully you will have seen the reports of our recent ‘Big90′ Online Poll on the Belfast Telegraph Politics Blog – DebateNI. We did two reports covering the main results, and including analysis and commentary. If you haven’t seen these reports, or want to review them, then here they are again:

Big90 Poll – 1st Report: What Unionists Think! Big90 Poll – 2nd Report: What Nationalists and Others think!

That concludes our Big90 poll – but to get the next updated view of NI Opinion, watch out for the first of what we hope will be regular quarterly NI-Wide online polls. Our first Quarterly Poll is scheduled for: 10am Monday 12th October – 12 noon Wednesday 14th October i.e. 50 Hours – hence we’re calling it the ‘LTQuarterly50′! We will be asking about NI politics, health, lifestyle, economy, education, etc. So if you have any views about poll questions, then we’d like to hear from you – please send any ideas/suggestions to

LucidTalk’s Latest Online Poll – It’s now ‘Live’

LucidTalk are running an LT ‘Big 90′ – a 90 Hour online NI-Wide survey/poll (open to everyone over 18) to collate opinions on the current NI political situation following the decision of the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) to leave the NI Executive. Survey Period: 10pm Sunday 30th August to 4pm Thursday 3rd September (90 Hours)
- Our survey should only take a short time to complete.

It is ‘One person – One vote’ i.e. one Vote/Survey per device (laptop, tablet, smartphone etc.) - if a second ‘vote’ is attempted from the same device it will immediately display a message that it is blocked. In terms of the publication of the final results. All collated data will be weighted and modelled in order to produce as representative view of NI Opinion as possible. Final results will be published on Friday 4th September.

You must complete all the required questions (indicated with a red asterisk) in order for your survey/vote to be recorded. All information is treated as confidential and recorded in compliance with the United Kingdom and Ireland Data Protection regulations, and will not be passed onto any other party.

OPTIONAL: If you would like to join our Online Survey/Focus Group panel and be invited to take part in future LucidTalk Market Research projects then please record your email address at the end of the Survey/Poll. If you join our Opinion Panel and take part in some/all of LucidTalk’s future Market Research projects then you will earn ‘LT points’ - which can be built-up to win shop vouchers, meal awards, etc. 

To take the Poll-Survey go here: Current NI Politics – What do you think?

LucidTalk – August Focus Groups

LucidTalk are running a range of Focus Groups next week (19th – 22nd August) across Northern Ireland to research opinions about a vital public service. There are six Focus Groups planned and we are looking for participants – particularly from the 18-35 age-group. All participants will receive a £15 shopping voucher, & a gift – just for taking part, and giving us your views! The Focus Groups will last about 1 Hour and take place mid-morning, lunchtime, or early evening, at a convenient location. If you, or someone you know, may be interested in taking part then please apply here: LucidTalk – August Focus Group Application


Corbyn extends lead in latest YouGov Poll

YouGov’s latest poll shows Labour Leadership candidate Jeremy Corbyn extending his lead over the other three candidates. See our latest blog – YouGov President Peter Kellner analyses the poll results and gives his views on the chances of Corbyn winning.
See: YouGov – latest Labour Leadership Poll


Martin McGuinness – You can’t count Non-Voters as Votes

Speaking at the recent ‘anti austerity’ march and rally in London Martin McGuinness said ‘The Tories were elected on the lowest share of the vote ever for a Tory government – 24% is no mandate for austerity’. First error with this is he should have said ‘share of the electorate’ not ‘share of the vote’ – The Conservatives got a 37% share of the vote (though it could be said that 37% isn’t much of a mandate either!).

However, the key question is this – is it correct to spin the election result in this way and quote % share of the whole electorate rather than just of those that voted?

Here we tell Martin McGuinness that you can’t non-voters as votes!

Non Votes aren’t Votes

EU Referendum – What does Europe think?

Peter Kellner (President – YouGov) reviews the latest YouGov EuroTracker poll to find out what the rest of Europe thinks of the UK’s renegotiation plans, and what points of agreement David Cameron should target: EU Referendum – What does Europe think?

Why our Polls and Opinion Panel Polls really work

The Southern Ireland polling companies did well with the same-sex marriage referendum – their predictions were pretty good, and one polling company RedC predicted the result spot-on. Here we look at their methodology and show how LucidTalk also use the same methodology with their Opinion Panel polls: LucidTalk Opinion Panels – Why they work

South Belfast GE2015 – Tallies and Exit Polls

Here is Bill White (MD – LucidTalk) talking about the South Belfast tallies from the general Election 2015. Tallying at the count is a bit like an exit-Poll and is a very accurate way of predicting the result several hours before the official result announcement. More importantly it shows the patterns of support for each party in various parts of the targeted constituency. South Belfast Tallies – VIDEO

East Belfast Election Analysis:

See our election analysis of East Belfast. And we ask the crucial question – Would Naomi Long have won without the unionist pact?: Would Naomi have Won?

Peter Kellner on General Election 2015

How did the pollsters get the main prediction of the UK General Election wrong? – although they got a number of things exactly right e.g. collapse of the Lib Dem’s, UKIP’s 12% vote share and the SNP dominance in Scotland. Here Peter Kellner – President of YouGov offers his views: GE2015 – Peter Kellner

Review of General Election Results and our Opinon Panel

After the results of the general election 2015 we have reviewed the results and done a comparison against our monthly Opinion Panels, and particularly our last pre-election Opinion Panel in April: LT Opinion Panel Results – April 2015

Election Night Guide

LucidTalk have produced an Elections night guide with some of the seats to watch, and key points to look out for. The Belfast Telegraph correspondents are also at all the counts and will be providing ‘live’ updates, with all the latest information and trends – see for details.

See our guide on the Belfast Telegraphs political blog: DebateNI, including details of all the planned coverage from the Bel. Tel.: LucidTalk – Election Night Guide

Latest GE2015 commentary from YouGov’s Peter Kellner

Into the zone of uncertainty

No pollster or political soothsayer can guarantee what will happen on Thursday. All we can really promise is to raise uncertainty to a higher level of sophistication. The closeness of the Labour-Conservative race is plainly one reason. If today’s polls are slightly out, or there is a last-minute swing, the results may confound all expectations.

But there is another reason. In most elections all we normally have to do is work out what is happening in the Tory-Labour marginals, adding in a glance at the handful of seats the Liberal Democrats might gain or lose.

This time it’s much more complex. Making sense of the Tory-Labour contest is only the start of the task. The Lib Dems are certain to lose many of their seats – but how many and who to? Scotland will provide its own drama: Ed Miliband’s prospects of becoming Prime Minister could depend on whether Labour retains a significant foothold north of the border – or gets wiped out. Finally we have the Ukip factor – not just the seats they are targeting, but the impact their vote has on the Tory-Labour marginals in particular.

In overall terms this means that around 200 seats matter this time – twice the normal number. These are the seats that might change hands, or stay with their current party only narrowly. And one of the few certainties is that both main parties will both gain seats (from the Lib Dems) and lose seats (Conservative to Labour and possibly Ukip, and Labour to SNP). The arithmetic of the new parliament will depend on the net impact of each of these different shifts – any one of which may defy the pre-election forecasts.

For all those reasons, Britain enters election week in the zone of uncertainty. The Conservatives are on course to be the largest party in the new House of Commons, but it is touch and go whether David Cameron will be able to remain Prime Minister.

YouGov’s latest survey for the Sunday Times confirms the indications of a small shift to the Conservatives in the past fortnight.

If, as I expect, the Conservatives benefit from a further slight gain in support between now and Thursday, they could end up with a modest lead over Labour.

To assess what this would mean in terms of seats, we can draw on two extra pieces of evidence. The first comes from the separate YouGov/Sunday Times survey in Scotland. This shows that the SNP has consolidated its support, with 49% of the vote. Under our first-past-the-post voting system, the party is likely to end up with 50 of Scotland’s 59 seats. Labour looks like to retain only five seats – down from ten in last week’s prediction.

In addition we have analysed the views of more than 50,000 people throughout Britain that YouGov has surveyed in the past ten days. We find that Conservative support is holding up better in its key marginal seats than the rest of the country, and also that the Liberal Democrats are recovering strongly, albeit from a low base, in the seats they are defending.

The upshot is that I have increased the number of seats that I expect the Lib Dems to hold, and reduced the number of seats that Labour is likely to gain from the Conservatives.



GB vote share %

Seat prediction for House of Commons

Now – YouGov poll

May 7 -














Lib Dem
















The combined effect of these shifts is to widen the Tory lead to 22 seats. Labour may struggle to add to the 258 seats it won five years ago. They are on course to gain 39 seats from the Conservatives and Lib Dems – but lose 36 to the SNP. The party would have to do only fractionally worse to end up with fewer seats than in 2010.

Of course, had Labour managed to retain, say, 30 of the 41 Scottish seats it won last time, Labour and the Conservatives, Ed Miliband would have an excellent chance of leading the largest party after Thursday, and moving into Downing Street.

Instead, as things stand, the future government of Britain could depend on whether the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats continue working together in the new Parliament. Unless the Tories win well over 290 seats, they will have to rely on Lib Dem support. Without it, Labour could end up in power, or at least in government, with fewer seats than the Tories.

Such a deal is likely to depend not just on how many seats the Lib Dems hold, but whether Nick Clegg is one of them. My guess is that he will hold Sheffield Hallam; however, there is likely to be a big variation in what happens in individual seats. This means that my totals may be close to the final result, but individual constituencies are far harder to call.

For the same reason, even if I am right that Ukip wins two seats, I can’t be sure that Nigel Farage will be one of them.

Indeed, it is certain that many seats will be won with tiny majorities. It won’t take much to happen in the final four days of this campaign for the Conservatives and Labour to end up ten seats higher or lower than my figures suggest, or for the Lib Dems and SNP to be five seats higher or lower.

Those tiny shifts would have a huge effect on the future of British politics. At the moment I have no idea who will be Prime Minister a month from now.

This blog is an edited version of commentaries over the weekend in The Times and Sunday Times

YouGov’s Peter Kellner – His latest views on GE2015

Latest Forecast: Tories pay the price of an inept campaign

Tories pay the price of an inept campaign

The election campaign is beginning to resemble the trenches of the First World War: full of mud and noise, but neither side breaking out.

Last week’s big push by the Tories – to frighten voters with the prospect of a Miliband government beholden to the SNP – has failed to puncture Labour’s defences.

Indeed, little has changed since the start of the year. Small surges of support have never lasted. The Conservatives have so far failed to exploit their two big advantages: the electorate’s preference for David Cameron as Prime Minister, and the Tories’ continuing lead on economic competence. If anything, the Conservatives are slipping backwards: at 32% their support is their lowest for four weeks.


They should not be surprised. Just 14 per cent of the public think the Tories have run the best campaign in the current election, a little behind Labour, on 17%, and way behind the Scottish National Party on 26%. The Conservatives have failed even to enthuse their own supporters; just 39% of them reckon their own party’s campaign is best.

It’s a measure of the Tories’ failure to maximise their vote that when we ask people who they would support if Boris Johnson led his party, he converts a two-point deficit into a three-point lead.

An insight into the Conservatives’ performance is provided by the results of a tracking question that YouGov has posed every day since Easter. We ask people whether they have noticed anything positive or negative about Labour or the Conservatives. People who reply “yes” to any of these questions are invited to tell us, in their own words, what it was.

Two big lessons emerge. The first is that every day, far more people tick the “negative” than the “positive “ box for the Tories, whereas Labour’s figures are generally in balance. Scaling up our findings to the electorate as a whole, 6-7 million people each day generally commend the Conservatives for something positive, while 11-12 million notice something negative.

For Labour, the daily average has been around 8 million both positive and negative.

Secondly, Labour’s top issue, health, has consistently generated far more spontaneous positive mentions than the Conservatives’ top issue on the economy. Since last weekend, average of 2.5 million people a day has credited Labour with saying something positive about health, while the Tory average for the economy is just half that: 1.2 million.

Our findings also suggest that this week Conservatives have backfired in their charge that a Labour would rely on the SNP. At the peak of the row, on Tuesday and Wednesday, almost three million people cited this as a reason to feel negative about Labour – but it made far more, almost five million, feel more negative about the Tories. By yesterday [Friday], both figure were down, but the Tory negative mentions, 3.3m, still massively outnumbered the 1.4m who gave it as a reason to think negatively about Labour.

All that said, Labour has been unable to take a decisive lead by fighting on the NHS, living standards and the Tories’ persistent image as a party for the rich.

YouGov’s latest survey for the Sunday Times helps to explain why both parties are at the low end of their recent levels of support. Neither Cameron nor Ed Miliband is regarded as particularly honest, even by their own supporters. When voters are presented with a list of adjectives, both positive and negative, their responses tell a clear story. Cameron, Miliband and Nick Clegg all share the same top attribute: “uninspiring”, followed closely by “negative” (Cameron) and “dull” (Miliband and Clegg).

Only Nicola Sturgeon breaks this bleak pattern. By a big margin, Britain’s voters reckon that, above all else, she is “passionate”.

With relative strengths of Labour and Conservative little changed since Easter, this week’s forecast is little changed. I still expect a small late shift to the Conservatives and the two main parties ending up neck-and-neck in seats. If, by some miracle, my figures were exactly right, then Miliband would probably end up as Prime Minister, despite leading a slightly smaller contingent of MPs than Cameron.

This is because Cameron would not have enough MPs to win a vote on the Queen’s Speech. The total number of left-of-centre MPs would be 324 (Labour 271, SNP 46, Plaid Cymru 3, Green 1, Northern Ireland’s SDLP 3), while Cameron would reach only 321, even if he could persuade both Ukip and the Lib Dems to support him.

There are two reasons why things could change between now and May 7. The first is that last-minute shifts have happened fairly often – in 1970, 1974, 1992 and 2010.

The second is contained within YouGov’s latest results. We are able to track the views of many of our panel members through time. And while the overall figures have changed only slightly since Easter, this is not because everyone has made up their minds but because the shifts below the surface are cancelling each other out.

In the past fortnight, around three million voters have switched from one party to another, while a further three million moving to or from the ranks of the don’t knows. The task for the parties in the final ten days is not so much to shatter fixed loyalties as to win over a decent share of the many voters with shallow preferences.

For Labour, this means reviving the momentum of Miliband’s personal ratings. Up to last weekend they had been climbing steadily, but this week there has been little further change.

For the Conservatives, it means reviving Plan A – talk about the economy and little else. Their recent forays into inheritance tax, right-to-buy and the influence of the SNP have won them few votes. But our latest survey contains a finding that could prove crucial.

Back in August 2012, just 24% said the coalition was managing the economy well, while 67% said badly. In the past two years the figures have steadily improved. By the start of this year, 42% said “well” while 49% said “badly”. This weekend, the government’s figures are its best since the coalition’s early honeymoon days: well 49%, badly 40%.

The Tories should be able to convert this into extra votes in the days that remain. But to do so, they must improve greatly on a campaign that, so far, has left most voters distinctly unimpressed.

This blog is an edited version of commentaries over the weekend in The Times and Sunday Times

Full Review of our January, February, and March Opinion Panel Polls

As a way of a ‘warm-up’ for our April Opinion Panel poll results, to be published in the Belfast Telegraph at the start of May (a few days before general election day on 7th May), we’ve combined the results from our January, February, and March Opinion Polls into one table. We have also provided an analysis and commentary of the trends and patterns, and we’ll be able to see shortly if our April panel poll continues with these trends, or throws up some new results. For our January to March results, commentary, and review see: LT NI-Wide Opinion Panel Polls: January – March 2015

E-Poll results from East Belfast Hustings event

Last night in the Strand Cinema, East Belfast, an excellent East Belfast 2015 Election Hustings event was run by Slugger O’Toole in association with Chambre Public Affairs and LucidTalk. The event featured a head-to-head debate between Naomi Long (Alliance) and Gavin Robinson (DUP). LucidTalk carried out some e-polling at the event which threw up some interesting results – full results of this e-polling can be found here: EBelfHustings-Slides

LucidTalk Westminster Election Predictions

Just to get the build-up going to the upcoming Westminster election on 7th May we’ll be running our Opinion Panel polling every month from February to May. We will be feeding this data into our prediction models, and then projecting the results for each of Northern Ireland’s 18 Westminster constituencies, and tracking any trends up and down.
This will be similar to the prediction models we ran for last May’s European election when three weeks before that election (in the Belfast Telegraph) we e.g. predicted Sinn Fein for a 26.2% vote share with the actual result coming in at 25.5%; and the DUP prediction was 20.8% with the actual result turning out to be 20.9%. So (in our humble opinion!) our Euro election prediction models weren’t that bad!
Our first Opinion Panel poll, results, and analysis is now on the Belfast Telegraph’s DebateNI political web site: LT – Opinion Panel Forecast

Non-Voters – Why don’t they Vote?

See our latest commentary article on the Belfast Telegraph’s DebateNI site, and our own Blog as well – What type of non-voter are you? There are many types of non-voter including Alex Kane who’s an ‘Irritable’!
What type of Non-Voter are you?

LucidTalk – Latest commentary article now on the Belfast Telegraph’s DebateNI

See LucidTalk’s latest commentary article covering what political parties should be included, and who shouldn’t be included, in Opinion Polls. Plus how the accuracy of polls compares to official public elections, – now on DebateNI from the Belfast Telegraph: …

Belfast Telegraph – East Belfast Poll Coverage

See all the results, coverage, commentary, and analysis, of (and from) last Thursday’s LucidTalk East Belfast constituency poll on:
DebateNI – BelfastTelegraph

Presentation Slides and E-Poll Results – Peter Kellner Seminar

Here are the full set of presentation slides from: January 29th 2015 – Peter Kellner (YouGov) UK General Elections seminar, Holiday Inn, Belfast. This includes the e-voting Audience Response poll results in the slide presentation format that was used at the event. This report also presents the ‘live’ audience poll results along with an applicable demographic analysis related to area of origin which was applied to specific epoll-results.


NB The e-polling results presented here were taken from the audience at the above event, and should not be viewed as representative of Northern Ireland opinion, or any specific demographic of NI opinion. The Data, Results, and Commentary enclosed in this report are confidential and subject to the provisions of the UK Data Protection Act. Any publication, distribution, or communication, of this report, or parts of this report, should only be with the permission of the Project Promoters and Sponsors.

Peter Kellner Seminar – Report and Photos!

Our UK 2015 General Election seminar event took place last Thursday at the Holiday Inn, Belfast. Our keynote speaker was Peter Kellner (President YouGov) recognised as one of the UK’s top polling experts. With over 70 attendees the seminar was a great success, with everyone saying they found the event enjoyable and informative.

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Here are some photos, including Peter Kellner with Chambre MD Will Chambre, and LucidTalk MD Bill White.

Latest commentary from Peter Kellner (YouGov President)

Latest commentary from Peter Kellner – President YouGov about a probable hung parliament after this Mays election, and the possibility that Sinn Fein’s five seats could be in play – that’s if Sinn Fein chooses to play in the game! Plus the DUP and SDLP could be in there with significant influence as well.

Here is Peter’s latest commentary: YouGov-Commentary

Plus don’t forget that Peter Kellner will be in Belfast on Thursday 29th January for a LucidTalk – Chambre Public Affairs seminar, at the Holiday Inn, Ormeau Avenue, Belfast, starting at 6.15pm. For more details see our previous news item, and/or to register directly, go to:

Peter Kellner Event – Register Here


Peter Kellner (YouGov) in Belfast for LucidTalk seminar

Hopefully you will have noticed and read our recent UK election preview and forecast on the Belfast Telegraph’s blog DebateNI, just before Christmas. If you didn’t, it’s at:

UK General Election – Forecast and Outlook

A large chunk of the background, research, and data for that review, was taken from the big-name UK polling company YouGov with the kind permission of YouGov President Peter Kellner. And it’s with pleasure that we can now announce that Peter will be visiting Belfast on 29th January for an evening ‘UK 2015 election seminar’ hosted by LucidTalk and Chambre Public Affairs. This will be held in the Holiday Inn, Belfast.

Peter is President of one of the UKs largest and best know polling companies – YouGov. He is most recently famous for announcing the first poll to show ‘Yes’ ahead during the recent Scottish referendum campaign and then accurately predicting the final result on Sky News on referendum day, before any votes were counted. Peter was previously a journalist and political commentator for the Sunday Times, Independent, New Statesman, Evening Standard, BBC Newsnight, BBC election programmes and Channel 4 News. He has also been an adviser on polls and public opinion to the Bank of England, Foreign Office, Corporation of London, National Westminster Bank plc and Trades Union Congress.

The 2015 General Election is set to be the most unpredictable election in living memory. The recent rise of UKIP and the SNP have turned all the usual assumptions on their head and it is unlikely that any one party will command a governing majority come May. At this 29th January seminar Peter Kellner will try to make sense of it all, and will answer questions, and provide expert political commentary on the 2015 General Election and the tricky politics of forming viable governments in hung parliaments.

The event aims to provide attendees with a unique insight into the likely outcomes of the election and also how those outcomes could impact local political parties. In particular, Peter will review how the Northern Ireland parties could gain leverage in a hung parliament situation, particularly the DUP, but also the SDLP and yes even Sinn Fein. After all, just because Sinn Fein don’t currently take their Westminster seats doesn’t mean they won’t have influence in a tight hung parliament situation.

So if you want to get the ‘inside’ view from the Westminster bubble, and hear detailed and accurate predictions as to what might happen at the forthcoming UK general election in May, then come along to what should be an enjoyable, informative, and fun event, on the 29th Jan.

For more details, and to register go to:

Register Here – For Peter Kellner seminar

NB This is a non-profit event, the ticket price only covers event costs.

We look forward to seeing you on the 29th January at the Holiday Inn. However, if you have any queries, or want any more information or details, then please contact us at: or call Bill White on: 07711 450545.

Westminster Election is the Key!

See our latest review re. the Westminster election and it’s importance to the Northern Ireland political parties, on the DebateNI blog site hosted by the Belfast Telegraph.Westminster election is the Key!

LucidTalk at DUP Conference

LucidTalk will be exhibiting at the DUP conference. If you’re attending come along and meet us on our stand. We will be running a ballot for DUP members to gauge support regarding Unionist election pacts for next May’s Westminster election. See the ballot here: PartyConfBallot-DUP

Full Coverage of latest Belfast Telegraph-LucidTalk NI-Wide poll-project

The annual LucidTalk ‘state-of-the-nation’ NI-Wide poll-project took place in September/October. The Belfast Telegraph provided a comprehensive full weeks coverage of all the results, along with detailed analysis and commentary. See here for all this coverage:   BelTelCoverage-2014

Belfast Telegraph – LucidTalk NI-Wide Poll-Project – Full Results here soon

Following the annual Belfast Telegraph – LucidTalk NI-Wide poll project which was fully covered with results and analysis in the Belfast Telegraph this week. Full Results including Results tables will appear here shortly. See full details at:

Belfast Telegraph & Lucidtalk Team Up For NI Wide Omnibus Poll-Project

September/October 2014
Full results, coverage and analysis in the Belfast Telegraph in early October 2014.

The next Belfast Telegraph – LucidTalk Northern Ireland (NI) wide poll-project will take place in September, with a full week’s coverage of the poll results, analysis, and commentary in the Belfast Telegraph in early October. The poll-project will involve collating the views of 1,080 NI citizens, carefully selected so that the overall views of this group will mathematically represent the total views of the NI public to within an error of only +/- 2.9%.

Both public and private sector organisations can participate in the poll-project as sponsor-partners. Sponsor-partners receive a package of services including:

1-3 poll questions within the full NI-Wide poll-project.
Representative Market Research across NI.
Marketing and promotion of the sponsor-partner’s name, business and objectives to several thousand NI residents who are contacted as part of the poll-project, and as direct respondents to the poll.
If applicable, and as agreed with the sponsor-partner, corresponding publicity, commentary, and promotion of the poll-project results in the Belfast Telegraph.
Full results report relating to the 1-3 sponsor-partner contributed poll questions, plus full demographic analysis covering gender, age-group, occupation, community background, and NI region.
Follow-up Management presentation and Workshop with each Sponsor-Partner to review poll-project results.
Further details regarding participation in the Belfast Telegraph-LucidTalk NI-Wide poll-project are available on request.

If you have any queries, or require any further information, then please call/contact us at anytime.

Live Blog from Election Counts

LucidTalk will be monitoring the Belfast Council election counts ‘live’ and ‘as it happens’ ( as CNN say!), tomorrow, and Saturday, and also at the Euro Election count on Monday. We will be tallying the ballot boxes and will be able to provide results forecasts 1-2 hours before the official results are announced. Follow all the news, predictions, patterns, and forecasts of results at: Belfast Telegraph ‘Live Blog’ Link

LucidTalk – NI Euro Election and Analysis

LucidTalk have undertaken a detailed review and analysis of this week’s Northern Ireland Euro election, taking place this Thursday (22nd May). This was published in the Belfast Telegraph on 7th May. For full review and analysis see: Euro Analysis – Belfast Telegraph.

It’s the turnout in Flagship elections that counts – Bill White

You may have noted Alex Kane’s column stating he would not be voting at the forthcoming European and Council elections. He also said that if turnout was lower than 50% it would be ‘a good thing’, as it may have an impact on local politics. Alex is a shrewd operator, but he could also make a good pollster as he’s following the key rule – don’t stick your neck out too far with predictions. He’s certainly not taking any risks with this assertion, as if the Euro/Council poll turnout gets anyway near 50% it will be an achievement, taking into account the Euro 2009 election had only a 43% turnout.  

I also noted Sam McBride’s commentary in the Newsletter about election turnouts. He mentioned that in the US they are often below 40%, and this doesn’t impact US politics that much. He’s correct, in that the Americans vote for everything including Sheriffs, and Court judges etc., and that’s where the low turnouts come in. The UK also has only 30-40% turnouts in local elections. As such, you can’t really say that if the forthcoming poll on May 22nd is below 50% then it will affect the flow of politics in Northern Ireland. Why? – Because the May 22nd elections are Euro and Council elections and are not flagship elections.  

All modern countries and western democracies have a flagship election i.e. a main election – The election when they show to the world that they’re a modern thriving democracy. It’s the turnout in a countries flagship or main election that counts, and gives that country (or region) democratic legitimacy. In the US it’s the election of their president, in the UK it’s the Westminster election, and in Northern Ireland it’s our Assembly election. In the US presidential and UK Westminster elections the turnout has always been 60% to over 70 %. At the last US presidential election the turnout was estimated at around 65% of the ‘voter electorate population’, which was a remarkable achievement taking into account many people had to queue at polling stations! Admittedly it’s hard to get an accurate turnout figure in US elections because of their complicated registration procedures, which vary from state to state – but it’s always been well over 50% in their presidential elections. These flagship elections are where Alex Kane’s point comes true – If the US Presidential election, or Westminster election turnout, fell below 50%, then it would be a very serious situation for both those countries, and would almost certainly lead to large changes in their democratic structures. 

In Northern Ireland our flagship election is the NI Assembly election, with the last election in 2011 having a dangerously low turnout of 54.7%. It’s significant to note that this was a drop from the 62.3% turnout in 2007, which was a drop from 63.1% in 2003, and 69.9% in 1998. The next Assembly election will take place in 2016, and a similar drop again would mean a turnout below that magical 50%. This could destabilise the whole assembly and wider peace-process structures. This wouldn’t happen immediately, but the democratic legitimacy of the assembly would be gone, and I would predict that within 2-3 years of the 2016 election the Assembly would collapse, or else would have to be completely reformed.   

So why are less and less people voting? There are various reasons for this – Indeed Sam McBride made another comment, that he recently heard a Stormont Minister (and I’ve a good idea who this is) saying that non-voting ‘could be interpreted as apathy arising from contentment’. That Minister is wrong – The polling research shows that a key reason people are not voting, is not because they’re particularly content, it’s because they believe that whoever they vote for, or whatever party get’s elected, it won’t make any difference to their own (often not contented) lives. How someone can say that non-voting people are mostly content, in a region where we’ve had a huge economic recession, NI youth employment is 1 in 4, large No’s of people are on the minimum wage, and a region that’s had the largest housing slump in the UK and significant No’s of people are in negative equity, is beyond me. This comment perhaps shows how out-of-touch the folks on the hill really are. 

One thing is clear though – The trend in Northern Ireland elections, and in all western democracies, is towards lower turnouts. For most elections, including this year on May 22nd, this won’t really matter. However the trick is to keep your flagship election turnout (in our case the NI Assembly election) well above 50%, which will then give the whole NI government structures legitimacy. However, our politicians should note that the signs aren’t good, and the trends aren’t hopeful, for the next Assembly election in 2016.

Belfast Telegraph – Youth Poll

There was extensive coverage all last week in the Belfast Telegraph of the exclusive Belfast Telegraph – LucidTalk NI-Wide Young People’s poll.

As with all poll projects, the objective with the Belfast Telegraph ‘youth poll’ was to obtain a balanced view of Northern Ireland opinion, on this occasion within the 16-24 year-old age-group. To do this we endeavoured to ensure our opinion sample was balance across community (i.e. religious), social background, location, and gender. This approach allowed us to obtain an accurate and representative view of what the young people of Northern Ireland are really thinking about a range of current issues including politics, jobs, and their vision of the future.

Results, analysis, and commentary, of some of the key poll questions and issues can be found here:

Are Community Barriers coming down?
What young people think of our politicians
Different Protestant and Catholic views
Young Protestants are disillusioned

Belfast Telegraph Youth Poll – What do NI’s Youth think?

Next Week – beginning on Monday 7th April, the Belfast Telegraph will be publishing the results of their LucidTalk Northern Ireland – Wide Youth poll, along with full comment and analysis. The objective of the LucidTalk - Belfast Telegraph ‘youth poll’ was to obtain a balanced view of Northern Ireland opinion, on this occasion within the 16-24 year-old age-group. To achieve this, the LucidTalk opinion sample was balanced across community (i.e. religious), social background, location, and gender. This approach allowed the collation of a representative view of what the young people of Northern Ireland are really thinking about a range of current issues including politics, jobs, and their vision of the future.

In particular, the poll-project involved the direct ‘live’ participation of several youth groups, clubs, and associations across Northern Ireland, which allowed the members of these clubs and associations to ‘vote’ directly in the poll-project, via the LucidTalk ‘on-the-road’ polling station. This direct participation by the Youth organisations is great fun for the young people, as they complete the survey confidentially, seal it, and then place it in the LucidTalk Ballot Boxes, giving the feeling to the young people that they are taking part in a genuine democratic process, and that their views will really count.     

As well as the ‘direct contact’ youth association program, the LucidTalk poll-project included telephone and direct individual interviews. This combination of contact channels ensured that the widest possible range of views and opinions were collated, resulting in the most accurate possible data sample to be obtained, and the most accurate possible reflection of the current views of the young people of Northern Ireland. 

Some interesting trends have emerged, with many questions when analysed by religious background, showing key differences in attitudes between Protestants and Catholics. With poll results, one key way the pollsters work out trends and compare results between polls, is to work out + or – ‘ratings’ for the various questions. As an example, if we take the ‘How often would you meet someone from the other tradition’ question, we see this shows a +23 rating overall, showing that most young people (not all) feel they meet someone from the other tradition fairly often. It should be noted that + 23, is a reasonable positive score, but it is not overwhelming, and could not be described as excellent. However, if we analyse this question by religion (i.e. how our poll respondents defined their religion) we find that Catholics felt they met someone from the ‘other tradition’ more than Protestants by a factor of 6 to 4, and Protestants felt they didn’t meet someone from the ‘other tradition’ that often, by a factor of 2 to 1!   The ‘rating scores’ for all applicable questions will be reported in the Belfast Telegraph all next week. So keep a look out, as they provide interesting reading, and throw up some key questions about the future of Northern Ireland.

Full results, along with the detailed poll-project methodology, will be published on the LucidTalk web site week beginning 14th April.

LucidTalk launch Research Panels for 2014

LucidTalk have announced a program of research panels for 2014 covering detailed market research and polling of key groups making up NI society including: Business Leaders, Public Sector Managers, MLA’s and Councillors.

In summary, the schedule for the Research Panels is as follows:

- Northern Public Sector/Social Economy Research Panel (April 2014)
- Public Representatives (MLA and Councillor) Deep-Audit Research Panel (August 2014)
- Business Leaders (Private sector) Research Panel (September/October 2014)
Members of the NI Assembly (MLA’s) Research Panel (November 2014)

There are many advantages for organisation(s) to consider, in terms of taking part in one or more of these projects:

- Each Sponsor-Partner can contribute up to four questions for each of the Research Panels, with these questions being related to topics that the sponsor-partner wishes to research with the targeted audience e.g. MLA’s, Business leaders etc.
Provides the opportunity to obtain in-depth views from a particular sector regarding your organisation, and your organisations activities.
Promotes and advertises the organisation, and the organisations activities, to a specific sector of NI society e.g. MLA’s, Business leaders etc..
All Sponsor-Partners receive full reports, and analysis, of all results relating to their specific questions, as part of each Research Panel project.

For more information and program details see: LT- Research Panels 2014

If any organisation would like to discuss further, and receive details of costs for participation in the Research Panel Projects, then please call/contact LucidTalk at any time.

Alliance Party Conference – LucidTalk Fringe Event

LucidTalk will be exhibiting at the 2014 Alliance Party conference, which is being held in the La Mon Hotel, tomorrow, 22nd March 2014. So if you’re attending the conference, or just in the area, come along, and meet us on our exhibition stand.

In addition, LucidTalk in association with the Belfast Telegraph will be hosting a ‘fringe event’ at the conference on polling, and recent poll-projects. This will take place in the Glen Suite, La Mon Hotel, at 3.45pm.– see enclosed flyer for details. This fringe event is open to the public, and not just members or supporters of the Alliance party. So if you’re attending the conference, or just interested, or perhaps are in the area, then why not come along at 3.45pm on Saturday, to the Glen suite at 3.45pm, for what should be an enjoyable and informative event.

For further details see: Alliance Conference – LucidTalk Event


LucidTalk at the NI21 Conference – Saturday 16th November

LucidTalk will be exhibiting at the 2013 NI21 conference, being held in the Europa Hotel, Belfast, tomorrow, 16th November 2013. So if you’re attending the conference, or just in the area, come along, and meet us on our exhibition stand, and have a chat!

LucidTalk in association with the Belfast Telegraph will be hosting a ‘fringe event’ at the conference on polling, and recent poll-projects. This will take place in the Copenhagen 1 room, 2nd floor, Europa Hotel, on Saturday 16th November, at 1.15pm.– see enclosed flyer for details. This fringe event is open to the public, and not just members or supporters of NI21. So if you’re attending the conference, or just interested, or perhaps are in Belfast for some early Christmas shopping, then why not come along at 1.15pm on Saturday to room Copenhagen 1, at the Europa Hotel, for what should be an enjoyable and informative event.


LucidTalk at the SDLP Annual conference

LucidTalk will be exhibiting at the 2013 SDLP conference, being held in the Armagh City Hotel, Armagh, on the 8th and 9th November 2013. So if you’re attending the conference, or just in the area, come along, and meet us on our exhibition stand, and have a chat!

LucidTalk, along with the Belfast Telegraph, will also be hosting a ‘fringe event’ at the conference covering the recent Belfast Telegraph-LucidTalk poll, and polling in general. This will take place in the Middletown room, Armagh City Hotel, on Saturday 9th November, at 1pm.

Seminar – Belfast Telegraph/LucidTalk NI Wide Poll

LucidTalk and the Belfast Telegraph will be hosting a seminar to examine and explain the results of the recent LucidTalk NI Wide poll.

Starts 12.15pm,
Wednesday 30th October,
Belfast Telegraph offices, Royal Avenue, Belfast,
Lunch and refreshments will be provided,
All Welcome.

UUP must choose an option and stick to it – Bill White Blogs for Belfast Telegraph

Bill White guest blogs for the Belfast Telegraph about the recent UUP Annual conference.

Find it here. 

LucidTalk Poll for the Belfast Telegraph

All this week the Belfast Telegraph are running commentary and analysis on the recent LucidTalk Northern Ireland wide poll.

Coverage can be found here

The full data results for the poll will be available here from the 23rd of September

Opinion by Bill White: The DUP has a decision to make ahead of upcoming Euros

Well, a three-year period of elections, and election campaigns, is about to get underway. This all starts with the European parliament elections in May 2014, with Northern Ireland local government elections sometime next year as well – maybe on the same day as the Euro election.

This will be followed by the Westminster election in May 2015, and the NI Assembly election in 2016 – so get ready for plenty of electioneering, point scoring, and retreating into entrenched positions over the next three years.

The first, the Euro next May, has three seats up for grabs in a PR election, in one large Northern Ireland wide constituency.

It is certain that the DUP and Sinn Fein will win one seat each, but who will win the third seat? This comes down to the mix of candidates, and how many candidates to run in a PR-type election like the Euros is a key decision for the political parties.

read more…

Do we elect the Person or the Party?

See Bill White’s latest blog article on DebateNI, the Belfast Telegraph’s new on-line vehicle for politics and opinion in Northern Ireland. Bill looks at the old argument of whether an elected representative has the right to do what he or she thinks is correct, without regard to what political party that person stood for at the previous election. See what Bill says at: – and please leave your views!

LucidTalk Audience-Response Polling system – Instantaneous Audience Polling at ‘Live events’

LucidTalk offer instantaneous audience polling at ‘Live’ events to carry out dynamic, ‘as it happens’, opinion polling. Similar to the ‘ask the audience’ feature on the famous TV show ‘Who wants to be a Millionaire’, the LucidTalk system uses compact hand-held devices (accommodating audiences of up to 300), to instantaneously collate opinions from a ‘live event’ audience. The poll results can be stored for subsequent analysis, or be instantly presented back to the audience to stimulate further debate. As well as the useful market research that LucidTalk audience response polling produces, the LucidTalk ‘live’ audience response systems also adds a Fun element to audience participation events.
read more…

Next Belfast Telegraph Northern Ireland (NI) – Wide poll-project – September 2013.

The next LucidTalk-Belfast Telegraph NI-wide poll-project will take place in September 2013. Polling will take place in late August and early September and cover a wide range of topics including politics, the economy, public services, and lifestyle. This will be one of the most comprehensive poll-projects ever undertaken in NI, and will provide an accurate representation of current NI opinion.

The Belfast Telegraph will provide a full weeks coverage of all the poll results starting Monday 16th September, with accompanying analysis and commentary. Watch for further details shortly….

Mid Ulster – Predictably Dull

Political commentator Alex Kane looks at the forthcoming Mid Ulster By Election and predicts the impact of the campaign on the Northern Irish public.

Read more..

LucidTalk Poll shows 79% support for Integrated Education

The poll, conducted by LucidTalk on behalf of the Integrated Education Fund and published in todays Belfast Telegraph, shows overwhelming public support for Integrated Education.

More information is available on the IEF Website

Election Pacts commentary article in Belfast Telegraph by LucidTalk MD, Bill White

It’s always easy for political parties to aim for what they see as the easy solution of election pacts, and so-called ‘unity candidates’, at elections. However this commentasry article from LucidTalk MD Bill White says that pacts and unity candidates may not turn-out to be the easy solution that a lot of political activists think them to be!

This commentary article appeared in the Belfast Telegraph – 18th January 2013.

Read the article here

LucidTalk Belfast Telegraph November 2012 Poll

Documents based around the three recent Belfast Telegraph / Lucid Talk polls are available in PDF format below.

Belfast City Airport Belfast Telegraph Poll Belfast Telegraph / LucidTalk Poll 2012 Integrated Education Fund Belfast Telegraph Poll

Latest LucidTalk NI-Wide Poll now in Belfast Telegraph

Results from LucidTalk’s latest NI-Wide poll will be published and reviewed in the Belfast Telegraph over the next several days. Subjects include Abortion, and Christmas spending – covered in today’s edition of the paper, and from tomorrow and into next week politics, education, and travel issues. Full Poll results will be on the LucidTalk web site from Friday 7th December.

Videos from Seminar on Presidential Election

Bill White from LucidTalk explains the basics of polling

LucidTalks resident Psephologist Gerry Lynch discusses the presidential campaign

Walter Russell-Mead
Professor of Foriegn affairs and Humanities

Obama Wins US Election – Belfast Telegraph article

See Bill White’s (LucidTalk Managing Director) review of the recent US election in last week’s Belfast Telegraph:

LucidTalk pollsters Bill White and Gerry Lynch predicted an Obama win from over six months ago and LucidTalk’s position never altered from that prediction. In fact, in association with our Ireland polling partners: Public Opinion Ireland (POI) LucidTalk predicted the exact final result from the US presidential Electoral College 10 hours before the final result was known – apart from only one state Florida, were we had predicted a Romney win!

British Polling Council

LucidTalk have become Full members of the British Polling Council (BPC).

LucidTalk’s membership application has been accepted by the British Polling Council, and they will be listed as Full members of the BPC by 31st May 2012.

read more…

Belfast Telegraph – LucidTalk Partnership

LucidTalk are now in partnership with the Belfast Telegraph.

A Major NI wide poll will be carried out in April in association with the Belfast Telegraph.
LucidTalk also carry out Mini-Surveys to provide immediate ‘snapshots’ of Opinion.

read more…

LucidTalk Seminar at Belfast Telegraph

LucidTalk host Seminar at Belfast Telegraph to announce forthcoming Northern Ireland wide Poll

On Thursday 10th May LucidTalk hosted a seminar at the Belfast Telegraph to announce their joint polling project with the Newspaper.

read more…

LucidTalk Welcomes Gerry Lynch to the Team

Bill White, founder of LucidTalk, has welcomed Belfast-based election and polling expert Gerry Lynch to the LucidTalk team.

read more…

Dissatisfaction with Stormont shown to be rife

A survey of more than a thousand Northern Ireland voters has revealed a high level of disillusionment and dissatisfaction with the current Stormont government.

read more…

Irish unity no longer seen as a pressing issue

Irish unity is no longer viewed by many in Northern Ireland as a pressing political issue, according to a new survey.

read more…

A speedy overview of LucidTalk’s Northern Ireland Wide Poll results

A speedy overview of LucidTalk’s Northern Ireland Wide Poll results

The recent LucidTalk/Belfast Telegraph Opinion Poll has thrown up some rather interesting information;

read more…