Immobility and the Brexit vote

Publication type

Journal Article

Published in

Cambridge Journal of Regions, Economy and Society


Neil Lee, Katy Morris and Thomas Kemeny

Publication date


Popular explanations of the Brexit vote have centred on the division between cosmopolitan internationalists who voted Remain and geographically rooted individuals who voted Leave. In this article, we conduct the first empirical test of whether residential immobility—the concept underpinning this distinction—was an important variable in the Brexit vote. We find that locally rooted individuals—defined as those living in their county of birth—were 7% more likely to support Leave. However, the impact of immobility was filtered by local circumstances: immobility only mattered for respondents in areas experiencing relative economic decline or increases in migrant populations.

Volume and page numbers

11, 143-163





Politics, Public Opinion, Area Effects, Psychology, Geography, Elections. Electoral Behaviour, Demography, Migration and Sociology Of Households


Not held in Hilary Doughty Research Library - bibliographic reference only

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