New Technologies and Political Preferences: The Electoral Compass

This report details the research activities undertaken by the author (Dr. Matthew Wall) during his tenure as an ‘Experienced Researcher’ (ER) at Kieskompas in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, under the auspices of the Marie Curie Initial Training Network in Electoral Democracy (ELECDEM). The research undertaken in this period focused on data produced by online ‘Voter Engagement Applications’ (VEAs), also known as ‘Vote Advice Applications’ (VAAs). The research undertaken was primarily quantitative in nature, and deployed a mixture of survey based and experimental analysis. The research focused on three key questions: examining the impact of VEA sites on the voting behaviour of their users; investigating the reliability and design features of VEA sites to examine their contribution to electoral democracy; and experimenting with methodological innovations made possible by the novel data collection techniques facilitated by databases of VEA users. The report
indicates that VEA sites do exert and influence on their users; that design issues are extremely important for the functioning and legitimacy of such sites; and that user databases can be used to contribute to the methodological debate on optimising online survey implementation.

Download the full report: WP18_Matthew Wall_ER Final Report (PDF 856KB)

Further details of workpackage 18

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