- 75% of Scottish adults think the UK will exist in its current form in one year’s time, compared with 72% of adults in Britain overall.
- But more Scots think the UK won’t exist in its current form in five years’ time than think it will, with 39% saying it will and 48% that it won’t. This contrasts with the picture across Britain, where people are split on whether the UK will exist in its current form over that time period, with 42% saying it will and 44% that it won’t.
- Just three in ten of the Scottish public think the UK will exist in its current form in ten years’ time, with 28% saying this, similar to the figure for the British public overall (29%). And a quarter (24%) think it will exist in its current form in twenty years’ time – compared with 27% of the British public overall.
- SNP supporters are the most confident that the UK will not continue to exist, with 79% saying it won’t exist in five years’ time. In contrast, Conservative supporters are more confident the UK will continue to exist, with 73% saying it will exist in five years’ time.
Emily Gray, Managing Director of Ipsos MORI Scotland, said:
While most Scots expect the UK still to exist in the short term – despite Nicola Sturgeon’s stated timeframe of 2020 for a second referendum – they are less confident about the Union’s prospects in the next five years. The Holyrood elections in 2021 look set to be a key turning point in the future of the Union; if pro-independence parties win a majority in the Scottish Parliament, it will make it much more difficult for the Conservative government to refuse a second referendum on independence. For Boris Johnson, who has pledged ‘unwavering commitment’ to the Union, the Scottish public’s sobering forecast for the UK’s medium-term future should be cause for concern.
- Ipsos MORI interviewed a representative sample of 1,046 adults aged 16+ across Scotland.
- Interviews were conducted by telephone 19th – 25th November 2019.
- Data are weighted to the profile of the population.
- Where results do not sum to 100%, this may be due to computer rounding, multiple responses, or the exclusion of “don’t know” categories.