Projection Effects and Strategic Ambiguity in Electoral Competition
AbstractTheories from psychology suggest that voters' perceptions of political positions depend on their non-policy related attitudes towards the candidates. A voter who likes (dislikes) a candidate will perceive the candidate's position as closer to (further from) his own than it really is. This is called projection. If voters' perceptions are not counterfactual and voting is based on perceived policy positions then projection gives a generally liked candidate an incentive to be ambiguous. In this paper we construct and analyze a formal model to investigate under which conditions this incentive survives in the strategic setting of electoral competition, even if voters dislike ambiguity per se.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics in its series Discussion Papers with number 07-12.
Length: 22 pages
Date of creation: Jul 2007
Date of revision:
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electoral competition; ambiguity; voter perception; cognitive consistency; projection;
Other versions of this item:
- Thomas Jensen, 2009. "Projection effects and strategic ambiguity in electoral competition," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 141(1), pages 213-232, October.
- D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
- D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search, Learning, and Information
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2007-08-18 (All new papers)
- NEP-CDM-2007-08-18 (Collective Decision-Making)
- NEP-POL-2007-08-18 (Positive Political Economics)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Alesina, Alberto & Cukierman, Alex, 1990.
"The Politics of Ambiguity,"
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
MIT Press, vol. 105(4), pages 829-50, November.
- Enriqueta Aragones & Zvika Neeman, 1994.
"Strategic Ambiguity in Electoral Competition,"
1083, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
- Schipper, Burkhard C. & Woo, Hee Yeul, 2012.
"Political Awareness and Microtargeting of Voters in Electoral Competition,"
2012-04, University of California at Davis, Department of Economics.
- Burkhard Schipper & Hee Yeul Woo, 2012. "Political Awareness and Microtargeting of Voters in Electoral Competition," Working Papers 124, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
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