Opinion polling on Scottish independence


This page lists public opinion polls that have been conducted in relation to the issue of Scottish independence. A referendum on the subject was held on 18 September 2014.

2014 referendum


Many opinion polls were conducted about Scottish independence before the referendum and then during the campaign.[1][2][3][4][5][6][7] Professor John Curtice stated in January 2012 that polling had shown support for independence at between 32% and 38% of the Scottish population.[8] This had fallen somewhat since the SNP were first elected to become the Scottish Government in 2007.[8] The research also showed, however, that the proportion of the population strongly opposed to independence had also declined.[8] Curtice stated in April 2014 that support for independence had increased since December 2013, although there was disagreement between the polling companies as to the true state of public opinion.[9] Polls in the run-up to the referendum vote showed a closing of the gap, with one poll giving the Yes campaign a 51–49 lead. In the referendum, on 18 September 2014, Scotland voted against independence by 55.3% to 44.7%, with an overall turnout of 84.6%.[10][11]

Post-referendum polling


Since the referendum in September 2014, opinion polls have asked how people would vote in a hypothetical second referendum. These polls have been carried out since six weeks after the referendum.[12]

Sentiment in favour of independence was high immediately following the referendum, with the majority of polls published in the next six months showing a plurality in favour of 'Yes'. Over the next two years support for 'No' rose and support for 'Yes' fell. A Survation poll carried out in the two days prior to the UK general election on the 8th June 2017 showed the largest margin in favour of 'No' of 56% to 36%. By September 2017 five consecutive polls had shown a margin for 'No' greater than the 2017 referendum result. To date this has proven to be a peak for 'No'. Support for 'No' declined slowly until the end of 2018, and more quickly from the spring of 2019, at the height of parliamentary gridlock over Brexit. In October 2020 as the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic began, 'Yes' reached its peak to date when an Ipsos MORI poll for STV News showed a margin in favour of 'Yes' of 52% to 39%.[13]. Since that point sentiment swung steadily back in favour of 'No', coinciding with the period when Brexit trade deal was finally completed and the COVID-19 vaccination program was rolled out.

Throughout the period, events have caused poll results to swing sharply. In the few days after the Brexit referendum in 2016, polls registered support for 'Yes' which was out of line with polling immediately before that referendum, and which disappeared a few weeks later. Professor John Curtice said in mid-2019 that there had recently been a swing towards 'Yes', and that this was concentrated among people who had voted to "Remain" in the 2016 Brexit referendum.[14]. In July 2019, immediately following Boris Johnson's election as leader of the Conservative Party, a poll by Lord Ashcroft showed the first majority for 'Yes' in over 2 years. Again this poll was an isolated event, contradicted by polls immediately before and after, though it occurred at a time when there was a clear trend towards 'Yes'. Polls conducted in early March 2021, following testimony by Alex Salmond and Nicola Sturgeon at a Holyrood parliamentary inquiry, showed narrow leads for 'No' which were similarly transient.[15]


Date(s)
conducted
Polling organisation/client Sample size Should Scotland be an independent country? Lead Notes
YesNoUndecided
1114 May 2021 Savanta ComRes/The Scotsman 1,003 43% 49% 8% 6%
78 May 2021 Stack Data/Our Scottish Future[16] 1,000 48% 48% 4% Tied [lower-alpha 1]
6 May 20212021 Scottish Parliament election
30 Apr4 May 2021 Savanta ComRes/The Scotsman 1,001 42% 50% 8% 8%
24 May 2021 YouGov/The Times 1,144 41% 46% 13% 5%
30 Apr4 May 2021 Survation/DC Thomson 1,008 43% 47% 10% 4%
28 Apr3 May 2021 Opinium/Sky News 1,015 45% 45% 8% Tied
30 Apr3 May 2021 Ipsos MORI/STV 1,502 47% 47% 6% Tied
2830 Apr 2021 Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,096 48% 45% 6% 3%
2730 Apr 2021 BMG/The Herald 1,023 47% 47% 7% Tied
2327 Apr 2021 Savanta ComRes/The Scotsman 1,001 42% 49% 8% 7%
2326 Apr 2021 Survation/Good Morning Britain 1,008 42% 47% 11% 5%
2126 Apr 2021 Panelbase/Scot Goes Pop 1,075 47% 48% 6% 1%
2022 Apr 2021 Survation/DC Thomson 1,037 44% 45% 11% 1%
1620 Apr 2021 Savanta ComRes/The Scotsman 1,001 44% 48% 8% 4%
1620 Apr 2021 YouGov/The Times 1,204 39% 45% 16% 6%
719 Apr 2021 Lord Ashcroft 2,017 44% 45% 11% 1% [lower-alpha 2]
912 Apr 2021 Panelbase/Believe in Scotland 1,002 48% 46% 6% 2%
27 Apr 2021 Savanta ComRes/The Scotsman 1,007 45% 45% 9% Tied
16 Apr 2021 Opinium/Sky News 1,023 47% 45% 6% 2%
29 Mar4 Apr 2021 Ipsos MORI/STV 1,038 49% 45% 6% 4%
30 Mar1 Apr 2021 Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,009 48% 47% 5% 1%
2930 Mar 2021 Survation/DC Thomson 1,021 45% 44% 11% 1%
2326 Mar 2021 Find Out Now/Daily Express 1,022 48% 44% 8% 4%
1619 Mar 2021 BMG/Herald 1,021 49% 46% 5% 3%
1118 Mar 2021 Survation/DC Thomson 2,047 43% 45% 12% 2%
1116 Mar 2021 Opinium/Sky News 1,096 45% 43% 8% 2%
510 Mar 2021 Savanta ComRes/The Scotsman 1,009 45% 47% 8% 2%
59 Mar 2021 Hanbury Strategy[16] 1,502 50% 43% 8% 6%
48 Mar 2021 YouGov/The Times 1,100 41% 43% 14% 2%
45 Mar 2021 Savanta ComRes/The Scotsman 1,015 43% 46% 10% 3% [lower-alpha 3]
35 Mar 2021 Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,013 46% 47% 7% 1%
26 Feb4 Mar 2021 Savanta ComRes/Daily Express 1,004 43% 45% 12% 2%
12 Feb1 Mar 2021 Hanbury Strategy 3,946 52% 41% 7% 11%
27 Feb 2021Anas Sarwar becomes leader of Scottish Labour
2526 Feb 2021 Survation/Daily Record 1,011 43% 44% 13% 1%
1822 Feb 2021 Savanta ComRes/ITV News 1,008 48% 44% 8% 4%
1521 Feb 2021 Ipsos MORI/STV 1,031 48% 44% 7% 4%
49 Feb 2021 Savanta ComRes/The Scotsman 1,002 43% 46% 11% 3% [lower-alpha 4]
1922 Jan 2021 Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,206 49% 44% 7% 5%
14 Jan 2021Richard Leonard resigns as leader of Scottish Labour
1113 Jan 2021 Survation/Scot Goes Pop 1,020 45% 43% 12% 2%
813 Jan 2021 Savanta ComRes/The Scotsman 1,016 47% 43% 10% 4% [lower-alpha 4]
31 Dec 2020The post-Brexit transition period ends
1115 Dec 2020 Savanta ComRes/The Scotsman 1,013 49% 39% 12% 10% [lower-alpha 4]
27 Dec 2020 Survation 1,018 44% 42% 14% 2%
2026 Nov 2020 Ipsos MORI/STV 1,00651%41%8%10%
511 Nov 2020 Panelbase/Scot Goes Pop 1,020 51% 40% 8% 11%
610 Nov 2020 YouGov 1,089 43% 42% 10% 1%
28 Oct3 Nov 2020 Survation 1,071 47% 40% 13% 7%
29 Oct 2020 Ipsos MORI/STV 1,04552%39%9%13%
9 Oct 2020 Savanta ComRes 1,003 47% 42% 11% 5%
25 Sep5 Oct 2020 Survation/Progress Scotland 2,09349%42%9%7%[lower-alpha 5]
1721 Sep 2020 JL Partners 1,016 51% 40% 7% 11% [lower-alpha 6]
27 Sep 2020 Survation 1,018 46% 40% 13% 6%
1218 Aug 2020 Panelbase/Business for Scotland 1,011 51% 42% 7% 9%
613 Aug 2020 Savanta ComRes 1,008 49% 42% 9% 7%
610 Aug 2020 YouGov/The Times 1,142 45% 40% 9% 5%
5 Aug 2020Douglas Ross becomes leader of the Scottish Conservatives
30 Jul 2020 Jackson Carlaw resigns as leader of the Scottish Conservatives
30 Jun3 Jul 2020 Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,026 50% 43% 7% 7%
1519 Jun 2020 Panelbase/Business for Scotland 1,070 50% 43% 7% 7%
15 Jun 2020 Panelbase/Scot Goes Pop 1,022 48% 45% 8% 3%
15 May 2020 Panelbase/Wings Over Scotland 1,086 46% 46% 7% Tied
2426 Mar 2020 Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,023 46% 47% 7% 1%
1 March 2020 COVID-19 pandemic confirmed to have spread to Scotland
14 Feb 2020Jackson Carlaw becomes leader of the Scottish Conservatives
714 Feb 2020 YouGov/Hanbury Strategy 2,58745%46%8%1%[lower-alpha 7][lower-alpha 8]
31 Jan 2020The United Kingdom leaves the European Union
2831 Jan 2020 Panelbase/Scot Goes Pop 1,01649%46%6%3%
2227 Jan 2020 YouGov 1,03943%42%10%1%
2022 Jan 2020 Survation/Progress Scotland 1,01945%45%10%Tied
12 Dec 20192019 United Kingdom general election
10–11 Dec 2019 Survation/The Courier 1,01246%47%7%1%
36 Dec 2019 Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,02044%50%6%6%
36 Dec 2019 YouGov/The Times 1,00838%48%12%10%
19–25 Nov 2019 Ipsos MORI/STV 1,04648%48%4%Tied
2022 Nov 2019 Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,00945%47%7%2%
9–11 Oct 2019 Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,00346%47%7%1%
30 Sep–9 Oct 2019 Survation/Progress Scotland 2,03240%51%9%11%[lower-alpha 9]
30 Aug–3 Sep 2019 YouGov/The Times 1,05943%44%13%1%
29 Aug 2019 Ruth Davidson resigns as leader of the Scottish Conservatives
30 Jul–2 Aug 2019 Lord Ashcroft 1,01946%43%12%3%[lower-alpha 2][lower-alpha 7]
24 Jul 2019 Boris Johnson becomes the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
18–20 Jun 2019 Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,02446%48%6%2%
24 May 2019 Theresa May announces her resignation as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
23 May 20192019 European Parliament election
14–17 May 2019 Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,02145%49%6%4%
24–26 Apr 2019 YouGov/The Times 1,02944%45%11%1%
18–24 Apr 2019 Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,01844%49%7%5%
15–21 Mar 2019 Survation/Progress Scotland 2,04135%56%8%21%[lower-alpha 10]
30 Nov–5 Dec 2018 Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,02845%51%4%6%
2–7 Nov 2018 Panelbase/Constitutional Commission 1,05043%52%5%9%
18–21 Oct 2018 Survation/Daily Record 1,01741%51%7%10%
3–5 Oct 2018 Survation/Scottish National Party 1,01341%49%8%8%
28 Sep–4 Oct 2018 Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,02441%52%7%11%
28 Sep–2 Oct 2018 Survation/Sunday Post 1,03643%49%8%6%
24–29 Aug 2018 Deltapoll/OFOC & Best for Britain 1,02245%47%8%2%[lower-alpha 11]
5–10 Jul 2018 Survation/Daily Record 1,00241%47%12%6%[lower-alpha 7]
8–13 Jun 2018 Panelbase/Sunday Times1,02141%53%6%12%
1–5 Jun 2018 YouGov/The Times1,07541%50%6%9%
30 May–5 Jun 2018 YouGov/Future of England1,05241%47%12%6%[lower-alpha 12][lower-alpha 7]
23–28 Mar 2018 Panelbase/Sunday Times1,03741%53%6%12%
5–11 Mar 2018 Ipsos MORI/STV1,05046%50%4%4%[lower-alpha 7]
24–28 Jan 2018 Survation/Daily Record1,02942%50%8%8%
12–16 Jan 2018 YouGov/The Times1,00237%50%10%13%[lower-alpha 7]
1–5 Dec 2017 Survation/Sunday Post1,00642%49%8%7%
27–30 Nov 2017 Survation/Daily Record1,01742%48%10%6%
2–5 Oct 2017 YouGov/The Times1,13539%50%7%11%[lower-alpha 7]
8–12 Sep 2017Survation/Scottish Daily Mail1,01642%49%9%7%
31 Aug–7 Sep 2017Panelbase/Sunday Times1,02140%53%6%13%
9–13 Jun 2017Survation/Daily Record1,03739%53%7%14%
8 Jun 20172017 United Kingdom general election
6–7 Jun 2017Survation/Daily Record1,00136%56%7%20%
2–7 Jun 2017Panelbase1,10641%53%6%12%
1–5 Jun 2017YouGov/The Times1,09338%50%8%12%[lower-alpha 7]
31 May–2 Jun 2017Survation/Sunday Post1,02442%50%8%8%
22–27 May 2017Ipsos MORI/STV1,01645%51%3%6%[lower-alpha 7]
15–18 May 2017YouGov/The Times1,03239%49%8%10%[lower-alpha 7]
4 May 20172017 Scottish local elections
24–27 Apr 2017YouGov/The Times1,01740%49%8%9%[lower-alpha 7]
18–21 Apr 2017Panelbase/Sunday Times1,02943%52%5%9%
18–21 Apr 2017Survation/Sunday Post1,01843%48%9%5%[lower-alpha 7]
7–11 Apr 2017BMG/Herald1,04143%45%12%2%
29 Mar–11 Apr 2017Kantar1,06037%55%8%18%
13–17 Mar 2017Panelbase/Sunday Times1,00842%53%5%11%
9–14 Mar 2017YouGov/The Times1,02837%48%11%11%[lower-alpha 7]
8–13 Mar 2017Survation/Scottish Daily Mail1,01943%48%9%5%
13 Mar 2017 Nicola Sturgeon announces the intention to seek approval for a Section 30 order enabling an independence referendum
24 Feb–6 Mar 2017Ipsos MORI/STV1,02947%46%6%1%
23–27 Feb 2017BMG/Herald1,00941%44%15%3%
7–13 Feb 2017Panelbase/Wings Over Scotland1,02844%51%6%7%
26–31 Jan 2017BMG/Herald1,06743%45%10%2%
20–26 Jan 2017Panelbase/Sunday Times1,02043%51%7%8%
9–16 Dec 2016BMG/Herald1,00240%47%13%7%
29 Aug–16 Dec 2016YouGov3,16639%47%11%8%[lower-alpha 7]
24–29 Nov 2016YouGov/The Times1,13438%49%13%11%
9–15 Sep 2016Panelbase/Sunday Times1,02444%50%7%6%
5–11 Sep 2016Ipsos MORI/STV[permanent dead link]1,00045%50%5%5%
5–10 Sep 2016Survation1,07342%48%10%6%
10 Aug–4 Sep 2016TNS1,04741%47%12%6%
29–31 Aug 2016YouGov/The Times1,03940%46%13%6%[lower-alpha 7]
20–25 Jul 2016YouGov1,00540%45%14%5%[lower-alpha 7]
13 Jul 2016 Theresa May becomes the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
24–28 Jun 2016Survation/Scottish Daily Mail1,05547%41%12%6%
25–26 Jun 2016Panelbase/Sunday Times62647%44%8%3%
25 Jun 2016Survation/Daily Record1,00248%41%9%7%
24 Jun 2016 David Cameron announces his resignation as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
23 Jun 20162016 EU membership referendum
5 May 20162016 Scottish Parliament election
2–4 May 2016YouGov/The Times1,44541%48%12%7%
23–28 Apr 2016Panelbase/Sunday Times1,07444%49%6%5%
15–20 Apr 2016Survation/Daily Record1,00544%47%9%3%
6–15 Apr 2016Panelbase/Sunday Times1,02145%51%5%6%
7–11 Apr 2016YouGov/The Times1,01241%49%10%8%
10–17 Mar 2016Survation/Daily Record1,05144%47%9%3%
7–9 Mar 2016YouGov/The Times1,07040%47%12%7%
25–29 Feb 2016Survation/Scottish Daily Mail1,02244%49%7%5%
11–16 Feb 2016Survation/Daily Record1,00642%48%9%6%
1–7 Feb 2016Ipsos MORI/STV1,00049%45%5%4%
1–4 Feb 2016YouGov/The Times1,02243%51%7%8%
8–14 Jan 2016Panelbase/Sunday Times1,05344%50%7%6%
8–12 Jan 2016Survation/Daily Record1,02945%47%8%2%
6–13 Nov 2015Panelbase/Wings Over Scotland1,07447%49%5%2%
9–13 Oct 2015YouGov/The Times1,02645%49%6%4%
7–10 Sep 2015Survation/Scottish Daily Mail1,01045%46%9%1%
7–10 Sep 2015YouGov/The Times1,11045%49%6%4%
4–10 Sep 2015Panelbase/Sunday Times1,00545%51%3%6%
12 Aug–1 Sep 2015TNS1,02347%42%11%5%
24–30 Aug 2015Ipsos MORI/STV1,00253%44%3%9%
3–7 Jul 2015Survation/Scottish Daily Mail1,08443%47%10%4%
26 Jun–3 Jul 2015Panelbase/Sunday Times1,00245%50%5%5%
19–21 May 2015YouGov/Sunday Post1,10844%49%7%5%
7 May 20152015 United Kingdom general election.
3–6 May 2015Survation/Daily Record1,66044%47%9%3%
29 Apr–1 May 2015YouGov/Sunday Times1,16243%49%8%6%
22–27 Apr 2015Survation/Daily Record1,01546%47%7%1%
20–23 Apr 2015Panelbase/Sunday Times1,04445%48%7%3%
8–9 Apr 2015YouGov/The Times1,05646%49%6%3%
13–19 Mar 2015ICM/Guardian1,00241%48%11%7%
12–17 Mar 2015Survation/Daily Record1,02745%43%11%2%
10–12 Mar 2015YouGov/The Times1,04945%48%8%3%
12–17 Feb 2015Survation/Daily Record1,01143%47%10%4%
29 Jan–2 Feb 2015YouGov/The Times1,00149%44%7%5%
9–11 Dec 2014Survation/Daily Record1,00148%48%4%Tied
9–11 Dec 2014YouGov/The Sun1,08148%45%6%3%
27 Nov 2014Release of Smith Commission report.
19 Nov 2014Nicola Sturgeon becomes First Minister of Scotland.
6–13 Nov 2014Survation/Daily Record1,00144%49%7%5%
30 Oct–5 Nov 2014Panelbase/Wings Over Scotland98246%45%8%1%
27–30 Oct 2014YouGov/The Times1,07849%45%6%4%
18 September 20142014 Scottish independence referendum results3,623,34444.7%55.3%10.6%

Remain / Leave question

Instead of using the question posed in the 2014 referendum ("Should Scotland be an independent country?"), some polls have adopted the remain / leave formulation that was used in the 2016 Brexit referendum. In the context of Scottish independence, this means that the question would be asked in the fashion of "Should Scotland remain in the United Kingdom or leave the United Kingdom?". The use of this format has been criticised by Scottish nationalists; SNP depute leader Keith Brown said in September 2019 that it was "a deliberate bid to confuse independence with Brexit".[19]

Date(s)
conducted
Polling organisation/client Sample size Should Scotland remain in the United Kingdom or leave the United Kingdom? Lead Notes
LeaveRemainUndecided
9–12 Mar 2021 Survation/Scotland in Union 1,01137%49%10%12%
10–12 Sep 2020 Survation/Scotland in Union 1,00837%47%11%10%
12–16 Sep 2019 Survation/Scotland in Union 1,00338%55%9%17%
18–23 Apr 2019 Survation/Scotland in Union 1,01236%56%7%20%
9–13 Nov 2018 Survation/Scotland in Union 1,01336%55%9%19%
28 Sep–4 Oct 2016BMG/Herald1,01039%47%15%8%
18 September 20142014 Scottish independence referendum results3,623,34444.7%55.3%10.6%

Three-option polling

Prior to the Scottish independence referendum in 2014, some three option opinion polls were conducted, giving respondents the option of full independence, some (undefined) form of increased devolution and the status quo. One poll of this type has been conducted since the EU membership referendum.

Date(s)
conducted
Polling organisation/clientIndependenceDevolution MaxStatus QuoUndecidedRef.
24-28 Jan 2018Survation/Scottish Independence Referendum Party32%15%36%17%[20]

Historical polling


Two-way polling

Respondents were asked "In a referendum on independence for Scotland, how would you vote?", with the options "I agree that Scotland should become an independent country" and "I do not agree that Scotland should become an independent country". These polls indicated the following levels of support for Scotland to be an independent country each year:[21][22]

Year Agree Disagree Lead
2009 40%52%12%
2007 39.5%45%5.5%
200651%39%12%
2001 45%49%4%
200047%43%4%
1999 43.5%46%2.5%
199852%39.5%12.5%

Three-way polling

During the late 1970s and 1980s, MORI conducted opinion polls on whether Scots wanted full independence, devolution or the status quo. During this period, devolution was the preferred option in each opinion poll, although support for independence increased.

Date(s)
conducted
Polling organisation/clientIndependenceDevolutionStatus QuoUndecided
5 Apr 1978MORI20%52%25%4%
March 1979MORI14%42%35%9%
3 May 19791979 United Kingdom general election
February 1981MORI25%46%30%0%
May 1981MORI25%50%25%0%
September 1981MORI23%47%31%0%
November 1981MORI22%47%26%5%
February 1982MORI23%53%19%5%
April 1982MORI22%45%27%6%
November 1982MORI22%47%26%5%
March 1983MORI23%48%26%2%
4 Jun 1983MORI23%51%22%4%
9 Jun 19831983 United Kingdom general election
29 Feb-1 Mar 1984MORI25%45%27%3%
24-25 Feb 1986MORI33%47%14%6%
6-7 Mar 1987MORI32%50%15%3%
May 1987MORI29%41%25%5%
11 Jun 19871987 United Kingdom general election
April 1988MORI35%42%20%3%

Four-way polling

Between 1988 and 1995, MORI polled voters on independence giving four opinions: independence inside the European Economic Community (European Union after 1992), independence outside the organisation, devolution and the status quo.

Date(s)
conducted
Polling organisation/clientIndependence outside the EECIndependence inside the EECDevolutionStatus QuoUndecided
1-3 Dec 1988MORI10%24%46%16%4%
25-28 Feb 1989MORI11%24%42%20%3%
1-2 Jun 1989MORI12%22%49%15%2%
11-13 Sep 1989MORI9%27%44%18%2%
22-28 Feb 1990MORI10%24%44%19%3%
15-20 May 1990MORI8%29%45%16%2%
14-18 Jun 1990MORI10%28%43%17%2%
19-22 Jul 1990MORI10%27%44%16%3%
16-20 Aug 1990MORI7%31%44%16%2%
19-23 Sep 1990MORI9%28%44%17%2%
18-22 Oct 1990MORI9%30%44%15%2%
15-18 Nov 1990MORI9%28%45%17%1%
29 Nov 1990Margaret Thatcher resigns as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
5-10 Dec 1990MORI7%25%49%17%2%
17-20 Jan 1991MORI7%28%42%21%2%
21-24 Feb 1991MORI10%23%45%20%2%
21-24 Mar 1991MORI8%27%42%21%2%
7-25 Mar 1991MORI9%23%51%16%1%
18-20 Apr 1991MORI9%28%42%19%2%
23-27 May 1991MORI7%26%45%19%3%
20-24 Jun 1991MORI8%26%47%17%2%
18-22 Jul 1991MORI8%28%43%18%3%
22-26 Aug 1991MORI9%26%47%17%1%
19-23 Sep 1991MORI9%26%45%17%3%
17-21 Oct 1991MORI9%28%46%15%2%
21-25 Nov 1991MORI8%26%47%16%3%
12-16 Dec 1991MORI9%31%40%17%3%
16-20 Jan 1992MORI9%31%42%15%3%
20-24 Feb 1992MORI7%29%37%23%-
12 Mar 1992MORI8%26%42%20%-
19 Mar 1992MORI8%26%42%23%-
26 Mar 1992MORI7%27%44%20%-
2 Apr 1992MORI6%22%45%23%-
9 Apr 19921992 United Kingdom general election
23-27 Apr 1992MORI5%22%47%25%1%
21-25 May 1992MORI5%23%48%21%3%
18-22 Jun 1992MORI5%29%40%23%3%
23-27 Jul 1992MORI7%28%41%21%3%
21 Apr-8 May 1995MORI9%20%52%17%2%

Scottish Social Attitudes Survey

Since devolution, the annual Scottish Social Attitudes Survey has contained a question on independence.

Respondents are asked Which of these statements comes closest to your view?

  1. Scotland should become independent, separate from the UK and the European Union
  2. Scotland should become independent, separate from the UK but part of the European Union
  3. Scotland should remain part of the UK, with its own elected parliament which has some taxation powers
  4. Scotland should remain part of the UK, with its own elected parliament which has no taxation powers
  5. Scotland should remain part of the UK without an elected parliament.

A report released in 2017, entitled From Indyref1 to Indyref2? The State of Nationalism in Scotland, detailed the previous responses from this survey by grouping options one and two as "independence", options three and four as "devolution" and option five as "No Parliament".

YearPolling organisation/clientIndependenceDevolutionNo Parliament
1999Scottish Social Attitudes Survey27%59%10%
2000Scottish Social Attitudes Survey30%55%12%
2001Scottish Social Attitudes Survey27%59%9%
2002Scottish Social Attitudes Survey30%52%13%
2003Scottish Social Attitudes Survey26%56%13%
2004Scottish Social Attitudes Survey32%45%17%
2005Scottish Social Attitudes Survey35%44%14%
2006Scottish Social Attitudes Survey30%54%14%
2007Scottish Social Attitudes Survey24%62%9%
2009Scottish Social Attitudes Survey28%56%8%
2010Scottish Social Attitudes Survey23%61%10%
2011Scottish Social Attitudes Survey32%58%6%
2012Scottish Social Attitudes Survey23%61%11%
2013Scottish Social Attitudes Survey29%55%9%
2014Scottish Social Attitudes Survey33%50%7%
2015Scottish Social Attitudes Survey39%49%6%
2016Scottish Social Attitudes Survey46%42%8%
2017Scottish Social Attitudes Survey45%41%8%
2019Scottish Social Attitudes Survey51%36%7%

Within the rest of the United Kingdom


British Social Attitudes Survey

The British Social Attitudes Survey has asked voters in England how Scotland should be governed, since the 1997 British Election Study. It has always found a plurality in favour of devolution, with majorities in favour between 1997 and 2003 and again in 2017. Since 2011, when the Scottish National Party won a majority in the Scottish Parliament, there has always been one in five people in England in favour of Scottish independence.

YearPolling organisation/clientIndependenceDevolutionNo Parliament
1997British Election Study14%55%23%
1999British Social Attitudes Survey21%57%14%
2000British Social Attitudes Survey19%52%17%
2001British Social Attitudes Survey19%60%11%
2002British Social Attitudes Survey19%52%15%
2003British Social Attitudes Survey17%58%13%
2007British Social Attitudes Survey19%48%18%
2011British Social Attitudes Survey26%44%19%
2012British Social Attitudes Survey25%43%23%
2013British Social Attitudes Survey20%49%18%
2015British Social Attitudes Survey23%49%20%
2017British Social Attitudes Survey22%55%15%

Notes


  1. Results are limited to only those who state they will definitely vote. Those who are likely voters, don’t know, or wouldn’t vote are excluded.[17]
  2. Lord Ashcroft is not a member of the British Polling Council
  3. The voting intention was not weighted by likelihood to vote. Savanta ComRes said that the poll result "should not be treated as a headline Savanta ComRes voting intention".[18]
  4. Savanta ComRes revised their figures in three polls after a weighting error was discovered.
  5. Non-standard question: Instead of the 2014 referendum question, respondents were asked "On a scale of 0 to 10 where 0 means ‘I completely oppose Scotland becoming an independent country’ and 10 means ‘I completely support Scotland becoming an independent country’ what number would you consider yourself to be?". Respondents giving answers between 0 to 4 and 6 to 10 have been mapped to No and Yes here respectively, while respondents giving 5 or "don't know" as answer have been assigned as undecided.
  6. JL Partners was not a member of the British Polling Council at the time of this poll
  7. Excludes 16 and 17 year-olds
  8. Instead of the 2014 referendum question, respondents were asked "If another Scottish Independence Referendum were held today, how would you vote?" "Yes to an independent Scotland", "No to an independent Scotland", "I will not vote" and "I am not registered to vote" were the options given.
  9. Non-standard question: Instead of the 2014 referendum question, respondents were asked "On a scale of 0 to 10 where 0 means ‘I completely support Scotland staying part of the UK’ and 10 means ‘I completely support Scotland becoming independent’ what number would you consider yourself to be?". Respondents giving answers between 0 to 4 and 6 to 10 have been mapped to No and Yes here respectively, while respondents giving 5 or "don't know" as answer have been assigned as undecided.
  10. Non-standard question: Instead of the 2014 referendum question, respondents were asked "On a scale of 0 to 10 where 0 means ‘I completely support Scotland becoming independent’ and 10 means ‘I completely support Scotland staying part of the UK’ what number would you consider yourself to be?". Respondents giving answers between 0 to 4 and 6 to 10 have been mapped to Yes and No here respectively, while respondents giving 5 or "don't know" as answer have been assigned as undecided.
  11. Non-standard question: Instead of the 2014 referendum question, respondents were asked "In a referendum on independence for Scotland held tomorrow, how would you vote?" and given the options of "For Scotland to become an independent country" and "For Scotland to remain as part of the United Kingdom", which have been mapped to Yes and No here respectively.
  12. Non-standard question: Instead of the 2014 referendum question, respondents were asked "Do you agree that Scotland should become an independent country?" and given the options of "Yes" and "No".

References


  1. Hennessy, Patrick; Kite, Melissa (26 November 2006). "Britain wants UK break up, poll shows". The Daily Telegraph. London.
  2. Hennessy, Patrick (15 January 2012). "Britain divided over Scottish Independence". The Daily Telegraph. London.
  3. Allardyce, Jason (15 March 2009). "Voters ditch SNP over referendum". The Times. London. Retrieved 16 March 2009.
  4. "Scottish Independence". Retrieved 8 September 2014.
  5. "Independence Poll" (PDF). Retrieved 8 September 2014.
  6. "Support for independence growing". Herald Scotland. Retrieved 8 September 2014.
  7. Dinwoodie, Robbie (5 September 2011). "Yes voters take lead in new independence poll". The Herald. Glasgow. Retrieved 5 September 2011.
  8. "Q&A: Scottish independence row". BBC News. BBC. 17 January 2012. Retrieved 19 January 2012.
  9. Curtice, John (24 April 2014). "Scottish independence: Depending on the pollster, it looks like a photo finish". The Independent. Retrieved 25 April 2014.
  10. "Scottish referendum: Scotland votes 'No' to independence". BBC News. 19 September 2014. Retrieved 19 September 2014.
  11. "Referendum results: Turnout a record high as Scots vote No to independence". Scotland Now. 19 September 2014. Retrieved 20 September 2014.
  12. "New poll: Scotland would back indy if fresh vote was held now". The Herald. 1 November 2014. Retrieved 13 March 2015.
  13. Cowburn, Ashley (14 October 2020). "Clear majority in favour of Scottish independence, poll shows". The Independent. Retrieved 14 October 2020.
  14. "Nicola Sturgeon points to 'growing urgency' for Scottish independence". BBC News. 5 August 2019. Retrieved 6 August 2019.
  15. "Scottish independence: More would vote for remaining in UK if referendum were held tomorrow, poll suggests". Sky News. Retrieved 2021-03-07.
  16. "How would you vote in a Scottish independence referendum if held now? (asked after the EU referendum)". What Scotland Thinks. Retrieved 6 June 2021.
  17. https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Ei5XsIz8p0eS3nYZiOuwWrTeNOHIbot9/view
  18. "SNAP POLL - THE SCOTSMAN". Savanta ComRes. Retrieved 11 March 2021.
  19. Schofield, Kevin (18 September 2019). "Majority of Scots would vote to 'remain in the UK', according to new poll". Politics Home. Retrieved 29 September 2020.
  20. "Poll: Support for Scottish independence at 32%". The Scotsman. 6 February 2018.
  21. "A Crisis of the Union" (PDF). Paul Cairney. Retrieved 19 March 2018.
  22. The Scottish Political System Since Devolution: From New Politics to the New Scottish Government. Paul Cairney. 30 January 2012. ISBN 9781845403386. Retrieved 22 March 2018.