The authoritative source for independent research on UK-EU relations

Politics and Society

This fact was correct when it was updated on 01 Jul 2021

What is the d’Hondt method?

Unlike the first past the post system used in UK general elections, when the candidate with the most votes in a constituency is elected, the d’Hondt method is used to distribute several seats within an electoral area. It works by recalculating each party’s number of votes in several rounds each time that a seat is allocated. Each party’s votes are divided by the number of seats it has won plus one. That means once a party wins a seat, its total votes are divided by two. If it wins two seats, its votes are divided by three (the number of seats it has, plus one). Whichever party has the most votes after these calculations are made wins the next seat until all those up for election have been distributed.

For more information please read our European elections and Brexit report.

More facts you may be interested in

What is fiscal headroom?

22 Nov 2023

What is non-refoulement?

15 Nov 2023

What is the Crown Steward and Bailiff of the Chiltern Hundreds?

29 Aug 2023