Andy Eggers

Eggers and Spirling database


The compressed database in CSV format (634M) is available here.


The dataset consists of roll call votes, election returns, and speeches linked to MPs over the period 1802-2010. The speeches cover the period 1832-1918; the votes cover the period 1836-1910; the elections cover the period 1802-2010 (although they are not linked consistently to MPs after 2001 yet).


Users of the dataset should cite the Eggers and Spirling LSQ article "Electoral Security as a Determinant of Legislator Activity, 1832–1918: New Data and Methods for Analyzing British Political Development". They should also see that article for details on how the data was assembled.

Data structure

MPs are identified in the file mps.csv. The unique key is the first column, labeled "member_id". Other files (detailing the votes, electoral records, and speeches of MPs) refer to member_id when they identify an MP.

Elections are described in two sheets -- elections.csv and election_returns.csv.

Division votes (i.e. roll call votes) for a given parliament are described in two sheets found in divisions_by_parliament.

In addition, we provide the raw votes and details on every division in two CSV files found in raw_votes_and_divisions. Note that these include divisions we imported from Valerie Cromwell's datafiles and from Aydelotte's dataset; these divisions are duplicated in the 1836-1910 data we got from the Division Lists (digitized by the History of Parliament Trust).

Speeches for a given parliament are described in two sheets found in speeches_by_parliament.

It should be clear that in each case (elections, divisions, debates) there is a nesting structure: each election has many returns; each division has many votes; each debate has many speeches. And in each case the unique ids in the higher-level object appears in the entry for the lower-level object.

We also provide (as of version 1.1):


Corrections/improvements are welcome. Best is if you can provide us with a new version of a CSV with corrections or additions made and documented.

Thank you!

Andy Eggers and Arthur Spirling