Posts tagged "elections"
We also recommended training for journalists in understanding polls. Had journalists learned what questions to ask (such as what was asked and who paid for the poll), there would have been less confusion and better writing (see “20 Questions a Journalist Should Ask about Opinion Polls”).
Polling and Democracy in Georgia | Open Society Foundations (OSF)
This has possibly made predicting the election rather difficult. See Chris Hanretty’s postmortem for the source and much more.

This has possibly made predicting the election rather difficult. See Chris Hanretty’s postmortem for the source and much more.

We start with the science. If we have a theory of the data generation process, we use that knowledge to guide our data collection and statistical modeling. I recognize that this is not the only approach to analyzing data. When the data mechanism is unknown, we must rely on exploratory techniques and algorithmic modeling as Breiman argues in his two cultures of statistical modeling paper.
Engaging Market Research: Incorporating Preference Construction into the Choice Modeling Process

(via Simply Statistics)

Larry Bartels: “Income growth was slow through most of 2012, and prospective voters were correspondingly pessimistic about the state of the economy. So how was Barack Obama reelected? An important part of the answer is that perceptions of the economy became significantly less pessimistic in the fall than they had been in the summer—a shift coinciding with the beginning of a rebound in the actual income growth rate in September. This upturn in economic perceptions probably boosted Obama’s popular vote margin by about three percentage points—suggesting that an election held a few months sooner might have been a good deal closer.” (via The Economy and the Campaign — The Monkey Cage)

Larry Bartels: “Income growth was slow through most of 2012, and prospective voters were correspondingly pessimistic about the state of the economy. So how was Barack Obama reelected? An important part of the answer is that perceptions of the economy became significantly less pessimistic in the fall than they had been in the summer—a shift coinciding with the beginning of a rebound in the actual income growth rate in September. This upturn in economic perceptions probably boosted Obama’s popular vote margin by about three percentage points—suggesting that an election held a few months sooner might have been a good deal closer.” (via The Economy and the Campaign — The Monkey Cage)

The significance of Wagner’s achievement went far beyond his ability to declare winners months before Election Day. His approach amounted to a decisive break with 20th-century tools for tracking public opinion, which revolved around quarantining small samples that could be treated as representative of the whole. Wagner had emerged from a cadre of analysts who thought of voters as individuals and worked to aggregate projections about their opinions and behavior until they revealed a composite picture of everyone. His techniques marked the fulfillment of a new way of thinking, a decade in the making, in which voters were no longer trapped in old political geographies or tethered to traditional demographic categories, such as age or gender, depending on which attributes pollsters asked about or how consumer marketers classified them for commercial purposes. Instead, the electorate could be seen as a collection of individual citizens who could each be measured and assessed on their own terms. Now it was up to a candidate who wanted to lead those people to build a campaign that would interact with them the same way.
How Obama Used Big Data to Rally Voters | MIT Technology Review (thanks Joël)
A blog companion to a bunch of courses on quantitative methods.

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