Publication of Preference Profile Information
The Scottish Local Government Elections Amendment (No.2) Order came into force on 7 January 2012. This requires the
publication by Returning Officers of information about the patterns of preferences marked on the ballot papers in Local
The purpose of the Scottish Local Government Elections Amendment (No.2) Order is to allow political parties and candidates
to determine how successful their campaigning has been in an election where STV has been used and to plan future strategy,
making use of information about the patterns of preferences marked on the ballot papers by the voters. For example,
where a party nominated two candidates, say “A” and “B”, in a multi-member ward, and had run complementary campaigns “Vote
A 1, B 2”, “Vote B 1, A 2” in different parts of the ward, it would want see how many voters had in fact marked their
ballot papers “A1, B2” and “B1, A2”.
The Returning Officer has made voting information from the 2012 council elections available to anyone who wishes to find
out more about how voters ranked the candidates in order of preference. There is one report for each ward.
How to Understand the Voting Information from the 2012 Council Elections
The first line of the report shows how many candidates there were and how many councillors were to be elected. The
subsequent lines begin with the number of voters who ranked the candidates in the same order. There then follows the order
that those voters used. For example, the row in bold below shows that 71 voters gave their first preference to the
candidate who appeared first on the ballot paper, and their second preference to the candidate who appeared second. The
names of the candidates in the order they appeared on the ballot paper is given at the end of the report.
The figure ‘0’ means that there were no more preferences given to any candidate by voters who used this sequence. The
final ‘0’ on the last line shows that the report has finished and no more sequences were used.
If you have any questions about the reports, please contact the Elections Office on 01292 612222 or
Other data from the elections has already been published and is available at