UK Election 2015 Party Manifesti Word Clouds

It is important that you read this article till the end for a list of caveats.

What do they really worry about?
You’ve got our word!

verba volant, scripta manent

What are the main parties in recent polls in England most worried about? One way to answer this question is to take at face value what it is that they have committed to in writing, in their official manifesti and using frequency analysis, to highlighted the most recurrent themes.

People-WORK!

Taking only the top three most frequent keywords the table below gives ammunition for those who think that all parties are the same. The words, “people” and “work” appear in all manifesti except for UKIP’s where “people” shares fourth place with “national” at 81 mentions each.

It is also no surprise that most parties, with the notable exception of the Conservatives, enjoy talking about themselves. Labour, LibDem and UKIP’s party names appear in the top three list. (Find all links to data and references below).

Top three words mentioned in the manifesti of the following parties.

Party Most frequent words Frequency
Conservatives People 158
Conservatives Work 137
Conservatives Support 131
Labour People 163
Labour Work 152
Labour Labour (the party) 145
LibDem Democrats, Liberal (the party) 177, 160
LibDem Work 170
LibDem People 167
UKIP UKIP (the party) 191
UKIP EU (The European Union) 158
UKIP Britain, British 125, 97

Education

While both the Conservatives and the LibDem mention “schools” only (101 times and 84 times respectively), Labour mentions both “education” 39 times and “schools” 39 times.

Party School and education mentions Total
Conservatives Schools, 101 101
LibDem Schools, 84 84
Labour Education, 39 + Schools, 39 78
UKIP Schools, 40 40

HEALTH

While both the Conservatives and the LibDem mention “schools” only (101 times and 84 times respectively), Labour mentions both “education” 39 times and “schools” 39 times.

Party Health-related mentions Total
LibDem Health, 98 + NHS, 55 153
UKIP Health, 42 + NHS, 42 84
Labour Health, 32 32
Conservatives No direct mention 0

national PLAY-OFFS

Among the two parties aspiring to nationalistic votes, the Conservatives mention “National” 96 times, “Britain” 94 times and “country” 85 times, whereas UKIP mention “Britain” 125 times, “British” 97 times and “UK” 89 times.

Total “nationalistic” mentions

Party Nationalistic mentions Total
UKIP Britain, 125 + British, 97 + UK, 89 311
Conservatives National 96 + Britain, 94 + British, 56 + UK, 49 295
LibDem UK, 96 + National, 82 + Britain, 57 235
Labour Britain, 58 + National, 49 107

It is important to understand the shortcomings of this approach. The number of mentions is only the beginning of your research as a voter. Frequency does not give any indication as to how this issue will be dealt with in terms of policy proposals.

“COS I’M THE TAXMAN”

For instance, all four manifesti mention the word “tax”.

Party “Tax” mentions Total
Conservatives 121 121
LibDem 88 88
UKIP 67 67
Labour 43 43

However, this simple table doesn’t tell the voter what each party intends to do about it, lower it, increase it, or keep it the same.

It is therefore essential to read all the documents for a more thorough understanding of what each party stands for.

Here are the links to each party’s manifesto, as well as the wordclouds in pdf format.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/election/2015/manifesto-guide

Wordclouds:

LibDem WordCloud Liberal Democrat Manifesto 2015

UKIP WordCloud UKIP Manifesto 2015

Labour WordCloud Labour Party Manifesto 2015

Conservatives WordCloud ConservativeManifesto2015

*The methodology is as follows, the text of each manifesto was submitted to http://www.tagcrowd.com a website that provides frequency analysis.

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