BREXIT: AN ANALYSIS OF THE IMPACT OF AGE AND GENDER

Open Access
Author:
Macaluso, Kaylyn Ann
Area of Honors:
Political Science
Degree:
Bachelor of Science
Document Type:
Thesis
Thesis Supervisors:
  • Matthew Richard Golder, Thesis Supervisor
  • Gretchen G Casper, Honors Advisor
Keywords:
  • Brexit
  • 2016 EU Referendum
  • United Kingdom
  • Age
  • Gender
  • Remain
  • Leave
  • EU
  • European Union
  • UK
Abstract:
Why did some individuals vote to remain in the European Union during the 2016 referendum in the United Kingdom while others did not? This research analyzes the effect of age and gender on the outcome of the 2016 EU Referendum. Much has been written about how an individual’s age and gender affected their ‘Brexit vote.’ Studies have repeatedly shown that younger individuals were more likely to vote to stay in the European Union (EU) than older individuals (Clarke, Godwin and Whitely 2016). Although the results are not quite as consistent, research also suggests that women were less likely to vote to stay in the EU than men (Vreese and Boomgaarden 2005, Nelson and Guth 2000). In this thesis, I reexamine the impact of age and gender on the Brexit vote. While existing scholarship has examined the additive effects of age and gender on the Brexit vote, I argue, building on theories of intersectionality, that we should look at how age and gender interact to determine support for staying in the European Union. The interaction between age and gender broadens the understanding of support for the Brexit vote. My results show that age always has a negative effect on the probability of voting to remain in the EU but that this negative effect is larger for women. My results also show that young women are more likely to vote remain than young men but that older women are less likely to vote remain than older men. These results confirm my expectation that age and gender interact to determine the Brexit vote.