Issue framing in online voting advice applications

The effect of left-wing and right-wing headers on reported attitudes

Naomi Kamoen, Jasper Van de Pol, Andre Krouwel, C.H. de Vreese, Bregje Holleman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Voting Advice Applications (VAAs) provide voting recommendations to millions of people. As these voting recommendations are based on users’ answers to attitude questions, the framing of these questions can have far-reaching consequences. The current study reports on a field experiment in which the framing of the header above VAA statements (N = 17) was manipulated (condition 1: no header; condition 2: a right-wing header, e.g., finance; condition 3: a left-wing header, e.g., nature and environment). Visitors of a VAA developed for Utrecht, the fourth largest municipality in the Netherlands, were randomly guided to one of the versions of the tool in which the header type was varied. Results (based on Nrespondents = 27,404) show that providing a header (left-wing or right-wing) leads to more left-wing answers as compared a condition where there is no header above the attitude statement. This effect, however, is only observed for respondents with lower levels of political sophistication.
Original languageEnglish
JournalPLoS ONE
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019

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Finance
Netherlands
Experiments
Surveys and Questionnaires

Cite this

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title = "Issue framing in online voting advice applications: The effect of left-wing and right-wing headers on reported attitudes",
abstract = "Voting Advice Applications (VAAs) provide voting recommendations to millions of people. As these voting recommendations are based on users’ answers to attitude questions, the framing of these questions can have far-reaching consequences. The current study reports on a field experiment in which the framing of the header above VAA statements (N = 17) was manipulated (condition 1: no header; condition 2: a right-wing header, e.g., finance; condition 3: a left-wing header, e.g., nature and environment). Visitors of a VAA developed for Utrecht, the fourth largest municipality in the Netherlands, were randomly guided to one of the versions of the tool in which the header type was varied. Results (based on Nrespondents = 27,404) show that providing a header (left-wing or right-wing) leads to more left-wing answers as compared a condition where there is no header above the attitude statement. This effect, however, is only observed for respondents with lower levels of political sophistication.",
author = "Naomi Kamoen and {Van de Pol}, Jasper and Andre Krouwel and {de Vreese}, C.H. and Bregje Holleman",
year = "2019",
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issn = "1932-6203",
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Issue framing in online voting advice applications : The effect of left-wing and right-wing headers on reported attitudes. / Kamoen, Naomi; Van de Pol, Jasper; Krouwel, Andre; de Vreese, C.H.; Holleman, Bregje.

In: PLoS ONE, 2019.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Issue framing in online voting advice applications

T2 - The effect of left-wing and right-wing headers on reported attitudes

AU - Kamoen, Naomi

AU - Van de Pol, Jasper

AU - Krouwel, Andre

AU - de Vreese, C.H.

AU - Holleman, Bregje

PY - 2019

Y1 - 2019

N2 - Voting Advice Applications (VAAs) provide voting recommendations to millions of people. As these voting recommendations are based on users’ answers to attitude questions, the framing of these questions can have far-reaching consequences. The current study reports on a field experiment in which the framing of the header above VAA statements (N = 17) was manipulated (condition 1: no header; condition 2: a right-wing header, e.g., finance; condition 3: a left-wing header, e.g., nature and environment). Visitors of a VAA developed for Utrecht, the fourth largest municipality in the Netherlands, were randomly guided to one of the versions of the tool in which the header type was varied. Results (based on Nrespondents = 27,404) show that providing a header (left-wing or right-wing) leads to more left-wing answers as compared a condition where there is no header above the attitude statement. This effect, however, is only observed for respondents with lower levels of political sophistication.

AB - Voting Advice Applications (VAAs) provide voting recommendations to millions of people. As these voting recommendations are based on users’ answers to attitude questions, the framing of these questions can have far-reaching consequences. The current study reports on a field experiment in which the framing of the header above VAA statements (N = 17) was manipulated (condition 1: no header; condition 2: a right-wing header, e.g., finance; condition 3: a left-wing header, e.g., nature and environment). Visitors of a VAA developed for Utrecht, the fourth largest municipality in the Netherlands, were randomly guided to one of the versions of the tool in which the header type was varied. Results (based on Nrespondents = 27,404) show that providing a header (left-wing or right-wing) leads to more left-wing answers as compared a condition where there is no header above the attitude statement. This effect, however, is only observed for respondents with lower levels of political sophistication.

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DO - 10.1371/journal.pone.0212555

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SN - 1932-6203

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