Monday, September 23, 2013

German Election Maps

Yesterday was the election of the 18th German Bundestag. The Federal Republic of Germany contains 299 constituencies and Google Politics and Elections has created a Google Map that allows voters to view how the candidates performed in all 299 constituencies.

Election maps for German elections are actually not usually as informative as election maps can be for other countries. In the US for example, a live results map in a presidential election can provide a good visual guide as to how candidates are performing and act as an indicator to the likely winner in the presidential race.

In Germany however voters actually have two votes, one for the local candidate and one for the party who they want to govern the country nationally. The Budestag is split down the middle, with half the representatives consisting of the local vote winners and half the representatives allocated in proportion to the national votes.

Many voters in Germany actually split their vote, voting for one party locally and for another party at the national level. Therefore a map showing the winners in each constituency inevitably only tells half the story and can be a misleading guide to the national results. However with Angela Merkel's Christion Democrat Union having performed so well the map does provide a useful guide to the overall result. has used the Google Maps API to create The How Germany Voted map. The map shows a breakdown of votes in each of the 299 constituencies.

It is also possible to view a breakdown of the second vote results in each constituency, a breakdown of the turnout by constituency and compare the 2013 results to the 2009 election results.

The Berliner Morgenpost has released a Google Map of the election results in Berlin. The map shows the results in each electoral ward and the candidates from Berlin elected to the Bundestag.

Beneath the map are a number of filters to display different map views. These include links to view where there was a high turnout and where the turnout was particularly low, where the results was very close and where the most voters voted differently at the local and national level.

The BBC has created a live Twitter map of the German elections. Rather than create a map of election results the BBC has decided to make the election itself the focus of the story.

All Eyes on Germany shows where people are tweeting about the German election. A clustered marker system shows the number of Tweets about the election made from locations worldwide. A heatmap layer also allows you to view the number of election Tweets as a choropleth.

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