Saturday, March 13, 2021

The Dutch Election Dot Map

Next Wednesday the Netherlands will hold a general election. Four years ago more than 10 million people voted in the last House of Representatives election. You can now explore how the Dutch voted in that election on a new dot map of the 2017 vote.

On Dutch newspaper NRC's interactive map All Votes as Ten Million Dots every vote in the 2017 elections is represented by a single colored dot. One dot equals one voter. There are 13 parties in the Dutch elections, which means there are 13 colors shown on the map. The result is that it is a little harder to spot patterns on this dot map, than say on Kenneth Field's US Presidential Election 2020, where you only have to determine between two different colors.

To help more clearly determine the geographical patterns in the vote for the different parties you can use the map legend to turn on or off the votes cast for different parties. This makes it much easier to compare the votes, say between the two largest parties (the VVD and the PW), by turning off the votes for all other parties. 

The data shown on the map comes from the votes cast in all polling stations. The map also uses land registry data to determine the inhabited areas of an electoral district. The votes cast in that district are then randomized within those inhabited areas. This is weighted so that more dots are shown in areas with more residential addresses (so, for example, an apartment block, will have a high density of dots).

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