Settler SIBs (Self-indentify as ‘British’) over-index more than any other Maslow group in declaring that ‘Being British’ in an important part of their identity. They index at 115; or 15% above the base population figure.

Though they are the smallest of the Groups (25.6% of the population) they account for 29.3% of all those self-identified as Being British (SIB); just slightly less than the larger Pioneer Group (37.7%) who account for 26.6% of all SIBs. The Settler SIBs account for 8.8% of the British population.

As with the other Maslow Groups there is no differentiation within the genders.

There is a skew to the over 55s - 36.8% of all Settlers, but 52.7% of all SIB Settlers; an index 143. The 25-44 age Groups are under-represented and under-indexed. The 25-44 age group contains 33.1% of the population but only 19.6% of the SIB Settlers; an index of just 59.

Importantly, unlike the other Maslow Groups, there is differentiation by socio-economic group. The ABs are under-indexed at a significantly low 68, and the DEs are over-indexed significantly at 136.

The demographics of the Settler SIBs differ from the Pioneer and Prospector SIBs. The indices between the ABs and DEs are particularly striking and, on further inspection, it is also clear that the values systems between these groups are significantly different.

The most over-indexed Attribute among all SIB Settlers is DISCIPLINE:

I believe that strict discipline is in a child's best interests. I think that criminals should face severe sentences to deter them from offending again.

SIB Settlers index at 161; or 61% more than the general British population. Both elements of this statement have been included in studies measuring Right Wing Authoritarianism.

This immediately sets the SIB Settlers in a different arena to the core (majority) meaning of ‘Being British’; i.e., the grateful and purposeful SIB Pioneers, and the image conscious and searching Prospectors. Belief in maintaining order through the application of strict rules and punishments is at the core of Settler SIB Britishness.

This emphatic differentiation is likely to have impact not only on their family dynamics but also their attractions to some populist authoritarian messaging, and their selection of media sources for information.

It is useful to be reminded that this is primarily a manifestation of attitudes that were more widely accepted in the past and remain accepted by the over-55 SIB Settlers.

The DISCIPLINE elements are firm and no-nonsense; providing clear guidelines to the sense of Britishness. SIB Settlers are likely to believe that many of the ills of the UK can be ascribed to the relaxation of these obvious guidelines. DISCIPLINE is linked in other research to support for strong leadership, as opposed to liberal openness and diversity.

Settler SIBs want the right to raise their children that way they want to – no interference from the Nanny State – but they also want the State to punish more severely those who commit crimes that offend their values systems. There is a basic contradiction about the role of the State in their lives. It lies at the root of many authoritarians and is typified here in these SIB Settlers.

DISCIPLINE will largely influence any discussion about the nature of their Britishness and the way they would interpret British traditions – something that is one of the most over-indexed aspects of SIB Pioneers. Research among SIB Pioneers has shown that DISCIPLINE is under- indexed within their group. Discussion between the SIB Settlers and Pioneers, while agreeing on being British, are likely to lead to disagreements around these issues.

This has been and will continue to be used as a ‘wedge issue’ by those people and organizations seeking control and power by claiming they are ‘more British’ than their culturally defined opposition. Partisan newspapers and on-line channels and platforms will attack elements of State-derived authority (government departments or even upper tier legal entities) for their lack of stringent and harsh punishments – yet call for more authority from the same bodies. To people who are not SIB Settlers this basic paradox seems absurd and forms the basis for the continuing confusion about the meaning of their Britishness.

Being British is not a thing that will be shown through their sense of style or self-presentation. ‘Cool Britannia’ is not for them. We see this in the Attribute BODILY EASE:

I'm not at all self-conscious about my body shape and don't feel a need to "improve" it. I think it's sad that so many people are obsessed with being thin.

On the surface this may appear to be a measure of self-presentation that denies the need for approval of others – something that is so important to the Prospectors. This reading of the meaning of the Attribute could indicate they are self-assured and resistant to messaging that urges people to control their weight and the side effects of obesity – type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, etc. – perhaps because they are already observing best practices. However, the evidence shows that this is not the case.

The SIBs, as a whole, are more passive and lower key than the general population; i.e., not likely to respond actively to the exhortations of authorities concerning this issue. This can be seen as reactionary in many spheres of life. This may be explained in the older age profile – a rejection of the “new” as a symptom of ‘modern’ Britain and not the ‘traditional’ Britain with which they identify.

But, on the other hand, this could be one of the illustrations within the SIB Settlers of how the rejection of a healthy way of life differentiates by class.

The AB Socioeconomic Group (SEG) and the larger ABC1s are driving this Attribute – AB indexing on this Attribute at 150, and ABC1 indexing 172 (most over indexed among all SEG’s). This indicates an active apathy to appeals to the general population. It can be argued that this group is displaying a rejection of these appeals on the grounds that they ‘aren’t British’ - British people don’t need to be told how to behave!

At the other end of the SEG scale the SIB Settler DEs actively embrace another measure of an unhealthy approach to life. They over-index on BODILY EASE but not at a significant level (index 113).

They do, however, very significantly over-index (164) on INDULGENT DIET- ranking it 3 out of 118:

For me, it is NOT important to watch what I eat and drink in order to keep healthy. I know I have an unhealthy lifestyle, but I enjoy it.

The larger C2DE SEG also over-index significantly(151) and rank it 4 out of 118 Attributes.

This is a slightly different take on the way they care for their health – not so much a rejection of Nanny State exhortations to change their behaviours, as much as a ‘fat but happy’ approach to life. A high degree of fatalism is unmistakable here. This is much more passive and disengaged. It is also an imprtant factor within the values system of the C2DE SIB Settlers.

Active Apathy can be almost hedonistic, and helps explain why SIB Settlers are difficult targets for many behaviour-change programs.

Conversely the third highest ranked Attribute among Settler SIBs is an Attribute that is very much not hedonistic. This is measured by AFRAID:

I believe there is too much violence and lawlessness in society. I'm afraid to walk alone at night in my neighbourhood.

This is very heavily Settler skewed – indexing at a very significant 143. It over-indexes even more, at 148, for all SIB Settlers.

The SEG analysis shows a wide range of espousal. From the DEs over-indexing at 149, to the ABs who significantly under-index at 60. These skewed social class profiles show a lack of agreement that Britain has too much violence and lawlessness – and that people are afraid to walk alone at night in their own neighbourhoods.

Perhaps we can typify them as ‘grumpy old men’ in line with the SIB Settlers as a whole – but SIB Settler women are slightly more likely to be afraid than men. That’s not too surprising given decades of ‘fear of crime’ research and sensational newspaper headlines.

The SIB Settlers first feel afraid - then want retribution on the offenders they see destroying their neighbourhoods with violence – real or imagined. Settlers as a whole tend to lead ‘small lives’ – less integrated with their neighbourhoods than in times past; often having fewer friends to talk to than previously; and as a result conflate their ‘local experiences’ and their ‘broader view’ that their country is under threat (internally and externally), and that social order needs to be protected.

It is clear that public bodies and pressure groups can have a disproportionate impact on this Settler mindset – using messages and memes that move from the particular and emotional to the general and ‘rational’.

Attempting to allay their fear, the SIB Settler will often adopt a comforting version of their country’s history - a time of mystery (not facts), overlaid with a sense of romanticism (not facts), and a sense of adventure that made the country great (regardless of the facts). This is at the base of much of their British Pride – a deep emotional attachment to a self-created past.

In other research, we find that Settlers as a whole make up over 56% of all people who say the most satisfying and fulfilling time in their life was ‘in the past’. The SIB Settlers over index at 149 on this.

Our next Attribute is FUNCTIONAL SPENDER:

When I'm shopping, I rarely stop and buy myself a treat - I just get what I need. Truthfully, I don't really enjoy spending my money.

Settlers, as a whole, are 31% more likely than the general population to agree with this. SIB Settlers are even more likely to espouse - 47% more likely than the general population. In light of some of the preceding SEG analysis, it may be surprising that there is no over-indexing by class; i.e., functional spending is not a result of lower purchasing power but is a function of a Settler values set.

As we have come to understand, the SIB Settler perceives a ‘hard world’; a place full of physical and existential threats to their simple desires to be left alone to enjoy the small things in life. Shopping is something they ‘have to do’, it is not a chance to buy new things and create new identities like it is for the Prospectors. In a world where they feel threats to their country and to themselves, it seems obvious that ‘saving for a rainy day’ is a sensible thing to do. Money spent on little treats today is not an obvious pleasure to them, when that money may be needed tomorrow.

Economic instabilities at personal and/or national levels will only exacerbate this tendency among the SIB Settlers.

Manufacturers and retailers whose business models depend on impulse purchases find these people difficult to motivate at the best of times – but they will be even more difficult in the coming years as the British ship of state struggles to remain stable in choppy waters.

Other research reveals these people are not only resistant to appeals to buy, but are basically non-materialist and non-acquisitive in terms of products they already have – unlike the Prospectors who are always looking for the latest thing to buy.

This frame of mind is likely to produce a home that is more traditional, functional and ‘lived-in’; e.g., not up to the latest trends or most current colour schemes – an ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ mindset. It is also likely to determine the way they present themselves to others – very conventional and traditional attire (from mainstream retailers rather than trendy niche ones) that is more functional than stylish.

The AB SIB Settlers are more likely to be seen as ‘shabby chic’ than ‘luxurious glamour’. Their homes and personal attire will be functional and even a bit out-dated, based on the old saying, ‘take care of the pennies and the pounds will take care of themselves’. The less economically safe DEs will be even less likely to be seen as ‘chic’ - of any flavour. They are also more likely to be attired and to arrange their homes in functional and out-dated ways – but more from the lower end of retail outlets. Their feeling of satisfaction will be based on another old saying, “A penny saved is a penny earned’, reinforcing their feelings that ‘saving is hard, but something to be proud of’ - because they aren’t spending on ‘unnecessary treats’ and not being seduced into spending what little they have. Once again being proud of being ‘resistant’.

This brings the analysis to the Attribute that was most central to the SIB Pioneers (ranked 1), not among the top 10 for the Prospectors (ranked 14), and here ranked 5 among the SIB Setters - NATIONAL PRIDE:

It is important to me to take pride in British history and traditions. I am proud to be British.

SIB Settlers over-index on this Attribute at 119; the most over-indexed of all the Maslow Groups.

In previous previous analyses, CDSM has often noted that one should take into account the ‘dynamics’ between the Attributes in order to find the meaning of any one of them within a Maslow Group values system.

The Attributes agreed with by the core SIB Pioneers espousing NATIONAL PRIDE are very different from the Attributes espoused by SIB Settlers.

The SIB Pioneers proud to be British five most over indexed Attributes are:


By comparison the SIB Settlers proud to be British most over indexed Attributes are:


Two Maslow Groups proud of being British; but having very different versions of what this means.

The only common attribute is NATIONAL SECURITY. But even here the meaning to each of them is different.

SIB Pioneers have found a sense of meaning in their life, and being British is one of the most important parts of it. Theirs is a living experience that encompasses a wider world and a feeling of gratitude for living in the UK - something to be protected and cherished. An awareness of the dangers to their country is a rational response to news and current events with which they are very engaged. The negative orientation of most news items is filtered by their core optimism - ‘If the solution can be thought, it can be done’.

The SIB Settler view is different because their pride in their Britishness is more fragile. They too perceive threats to the safety and security of their country – but this produces fear in them and a desire for retribution.

Media outlets and news cycles are geared to identify and communicate negative social events and trends – to garner subscriptions, likes, clicks, etc., - which in turn provide feedback data for the algorithms that identify ways to maintain or increase the sorts of content that will drive ’punters’ to engage.

Millions of pounds of on-going research have shown that ‘fear sells’ better than other content. CDSM has shown over decades that fear only sells to those who are afraid - and the Settlers are more likely to absorb and retain fear messages. Fear messages that are fact based, i.e., reportage of negative events is useful in preparing the SIB Settlers for the worst - a positive survival action. But non-fact-based messages, disguised as facts (disinformation), also create fear. The SIB Settlers will react to this in the same way, but now the survival actions will be inappropriate to the ‘true’, ‘factual’ situation.

This abuse of NATIONAL PRIDE is something that has been, and still is being used by ‘bad faith’ actors, using social media platforms and algorithmic ‘bots’ to spread fear under the banner of patriotism and pride of country.

This pride in their country is instrumental in creating perceived threats (internal and external) to their country. We can see this in the Attribute NATIONAL SECURITY:

It is important to me that my country be safe from threats from within and without. I am concerned that social order be protected.

Those who have followed the SIB Pioneer profile will be familiar with this Attribute. It is over-indexed at 123 among them.

The index is even higher, at 143, among the SIB Settlers. However, as we’ve seen above, there are real qualitative differences in the way this connects with other aspects of the SIB Settler & Pioneer values systems.

There are many clues that lead us to understand a basic drive for safety and security in Settler lives. This Attribute encapsulates one of the pillars of their British identity – something so important to them that they see threats to it everywhere.

The Settler drive for safety, security and belonging – which, by definition, they have not satisfied at this stage in their life – is most often satisfied by keeping their world ‘small’. They attempt to control any dissonance by limiting the amount and type of information coming to them and into their world view.

This is unlike the Pioneers, who also over-index on NATIONAL SECURITY, but tend to embrace difference and seek to expand their knowledge when faced with dissonant opinions and ‘facts’.

The SIB Settlers are discerning in their view of the world. But rather than seeking information from disparate or ‘untrusted’ sources , their view is taken from sources that tend to support their pre-existing orientations – websites, print media, and people that reinforce their world view.

As we saw above, their espousal of AFRAID will be a factor in their view of dangers to their beloved country. Internally, this is likely to manifest in finding ‘fear factors’ within their national culture. In other words, because it is important to them that their country is “safe from threats” they will tend to be more conscious than other Groups of threats.

In many ways this is a ‘good thing’, possibly seen as an early warning system to other groups. They have the capacity to sense threats – rooted in their need for NATIONAL SECURITY.

The second element of the Attribute statement deepens our understanding of this – the desire for the ‘social order to be protected’.

In their small but discerning world they are aware of threats to the internal world they have created – a world that provides them rewards and joys, not just worries and fears. Any threat to this ‘existence’ is a personal threat. A threat to the status quo is a threat to them personally. Settlers in general display the most resistance to change when compared to other Groups. It seems clear that the elements within NATIONAL SECURITY are expressions of major causal factors in the resistance; and that the SIB Settlers have it in abundance.

Protecting social order means that they are likely to feel uncomfortable in challenging existing social processes – even if the processes are not in their own personal interests.

This can be seen as a suppression of their ‘self’ identity. This would be fundamentally incorrect.

It must be remembered that one of their unsatisfied needs is the ability to feel they ‘belong’. Protecting social order is necessary because they need to know ‘where’ they belong.

They need a certainty that ‘their’ Britain is still ‘here’ and will remain so into the future.

This deep sense of being in a ‘British’ group, something that brings a sense of pride, is something that is needs to be protected, not changed. They will see threats to this group, which builds a version of belonging for them, as threats to them personally.

The downside of this intense love of country and being ever vigilant for threats is that they can see threats where none actually exist.

Many perceived internal threats to the country are actually the normal practice of democracy, where debate and dissent is built into the system of government while it attempts to find new solutions to old problems.

Threats to the status quo can be perceived in challenges to established practices, as new practices are applied to changed circumstances. These ‘changes’, being perceived as ‘threats’, can lead them to become deeply committed to resisting change - any change.

External threats come in all shapes and forms – based on them not being British. Migrants are obvious sources of threats (they are not British), as is EU-style human rights legislation (it’s not British – even if Britain was a driving force in the framing of the legislation).

Settler SIBs will very strongly defend their beliefs and will take ‘group action’ if they feel their group is under threat.

While other Maslow Groups may find these beliefs to be anti-democratic and ‘unBritish’, they will also acknowledge that the SIB Settlers would be highly represented among patriotic citizens displaying overt forms of the ‘British Bull Dog’ spirit if they feel their Britishness is threatened.

The final Attribute espoused in the Top 7 by the SIB Settlers is a positive mitigating factor in a dark scenario. It’s called COASTING:

I'm not at all driven to "get to the top". I think the modern notion of being successful is just an illusion.

Nationally, the Settlers account for 35% of all COASTING espousers, indexing at a significant 138. Among the SIB Settlers this is even more extreme – making up 43% of all SIB espousers. Over 65% of the SIB espousers of COASTING are over 55 years. Females are slightly more likely to espouse, with C1 and DE socio-economic groups also slightly above the base level.

The AB’s are the most significantly under-indexed SEG at 61. They are most likely to reject COASTING. They do want to get to the top and be successful.

The SIB Settlers have come to a point in their life where the ‘rat race’ no longer appeals to them. They have given up on ever ‘getting to the top’. More to the point, they have come to believe that success, as defined by society in general, is just an illusion; a cruel joke promulgated to keep people’s ‘noses to the grindstone’ for the benefit of the powerful.

This has an impact on their thoughts and feelings about all areas of their life, not just identification with ‘being British’.

Life is for living, coasting along on the trends of change, feeling no need to be the ‘best’. Their response to comments about the lavish lifestyle of a successful person could very well be “Yeah, but is he happy?”.

The same could be asked of them - “Are you happy?” and the answer is likely to be “No”.

SIB Settlers are skeptical of most exhortations to become more aspirational. They are not the sort ‘to get on your bike’ and move away from areas they know and move to other places to ‘better themselves’.

But they are inclined to display deference to authority in general and authoritarian leadership in particular.

They may join a group because their friends have. But they are much more comfortable being the person, or in the group, that makes the tea or cleans up after meetings. They don’t want the responsibility of leadership because they don’t believe it is ‘worth it’.

Conflation of the Attributes SAFETY (trying to unsure they do nothing that threatens their safety) and NATIONAL SECURITY skews their passiveness towards an axis of fear rather than an axis of hope. COASTING is a survival technique – a way of preventing their hopes rising too high with the inevitable suffering when they fail in their endeavours.

This approach to life can have an upside to it. These are people who refuse to go along with radical ideas which have a high degree of risk or failure. They may defer to authority figures – but are unlikely to follow radical or fringe ideas and actions. Leaders of radical ideologies often think these ‘proud to British’ people are on their side when they support ideas about ‘Making Britain Great Again’ – but then can’t understand why support for their ideas doesn’t translate into supportive behaviours.

These SIB Settlers are not likely to do anything that will make them ‘feel unsafe’, even if their identity is threatened. They are proud of being British but will be reticent to put themselves forward to confront threats to themselves and their country. This is where they will ‘follow’ strong leaders or people who can speak for some of their own more extreme ideas, like DISCIPLINE; preferring to seek the anonymity of the crowd, rather than leading the charge.

Summary: The SIB Settlers feel British and love their country and its history and traditions. But they feel the country they love is under threat. They tend to be older than the general population and have tended to become detached – not always by choice - from their communities; fearful of violence in their local area. This local sense of violence feeds their perceptions of national and international threats to their country.

They approve of strict rules, and punishments, to contain both actual and potential social disruptions by individuals. But fear and harsh judgement of others is only part of their story.

They are risk averse and attempt to keep their world small and safe. Their Britishness is rooted in controlling their aspirations – e.g., pressures to spend money to ‘upgrade’ their homes beyond simple functionality. The world is a threatening place and ‘saving for a rainy day’ is a virtue that provides them with a sense of safety.

Finally, life is not all grim and threatening.

They have a laissez-faire approach to their diet and body shape. The know their diet is unhealthy – perhaps driven by limited budgets that effect their food buying – but they say they like it all the same.

The budgets may be dictated by economic circumstances. On the other hand their ‘take care of the pennies and pounds will take care of themselves’ approach to all forms of budgeting will translate into functional spending – emphasizing ‘value for money’ offers and lower quality ‘budget’ buying options – more so than other SIB Groups.

Though they say they don’t buy themselves treats when they shop, it is likely that many of the food items they purchase contain more sugar, salt and fat than many higher priced ‘healthy’ options. These are all ingredients that intensify flavours and can provide a kind of ‘treat’ when eaten. This form of passive hedonism – enjoying the most basic of activities – is one of the reasons they are unlikely to change their ‘unhealthy behaviours’. They know and understand what healthy eating is – the newspapers, television and government campaigns have driven home the facts and figures for decades – but this is their small oasis of happiness in everyday life.

Simple solutions and small satisfactions.