Black-box models of candidate evaluation
Rent the article at a discountRent now
* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.Get Access
All contemporary models of candidate evaluation are memory-based models in that they treat the direction and strength of evaluation as a function of the mix of positively and negatively valued (valenced) information retrieved from memory. Yet, oddly enough, despite the assumption that memory mediates judgment, none of the major models looks at the processes involved in what information voters recall and how that evidence was integrated into a summary evaluation. In this sense then, political science models of vote choice are black-box models: They are silent about how voters actually go about interpreting information and integrating the “evidence” into a summary evaluation of the candidates. In this article we critique the major political science models, call attention to the implicit assumptions they make about what “evidence” is assumed to be in memory, and conclude with an argument for introducing process into our explanations of vote choice.
- Anderson, Norman (1988). A functional approach to person cognition. In Thomas K. Srull and Robert R. Wyer (eds.),Advances in Social Cognition: A Dual-Process Model of Impression Formation. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
- Anderson, Dewey, and Davidson, P. E. (1943).Ballots and the Democratic Class Struggle. Stanford: Stanford University Press.
- Bennett, W. Lance, and Salisbury, Bart R. (1987). Rational choice: The emerging paradigm in election studies.Research in Micropolitics 2: 1–30.
- Berelson, Bernard, Lazarsfeld, Paul F., and McPhee, William (1954).Voting: A Study of Opinion Formation in a Presidential Campaign. Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press.
- Brody, Richard A., and Page, Benjamin (1972). The Assessment of policy voting.American Political Science Review 66: 221–235.
- Campbell, Angus, Converse, Philip E., Miller, Warren E. and Stokes, Donald E. (1960).The American Voter. New York: Wiley.
- Campbell, Angus, Gurin, Gerald, and Miller, Warren E. (1954).The Voter Decides. Evanston, IL: Row Peterson.
- Conover, P. J., and Feldman, S. (1986). The role of inference in the perception of political candidates. In R. R. Lau and D. O. Sears (eds.),Political Cognition: The 19th Annual Carnegie Symposium. (Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
- Downs, Anthony (1957).An Economic Theory of Democracy. New York: Harper & Co.
- Eldersveld, Samuel J. (1951). Theory and method in voting behavior research.Journal of Politics 13(1): 70–87. Reprinted in Eulau, Heinz, et al., eds. (1956).Political Behavior. Glencoe, IL: Free Press, pp. 267–274.
- Enelow, James M., and Hinich, Melvin J. (1985).The Spatial Theory of Voting: An Introduction. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press.
- Gant, Michael, and Davis Dwight (1984). Mental economy and voter rationality: The informed citizen problem in voting research.Journal of Politics 46: 132–153.
- Gosnell, Harold F. (1930).Why Europe Votes. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
- Gosnell, Harold F. (1942).Grass Roots Politics Washington, DC: American Council on Public Affairs.
- Granberg, Donald (1985). An anomaly in political perception.Public Opinion Quarterly 99: 504–516.
- Granberg, Donald, and Brent, E. (1980). Perceptions of political candidates.American Scientists 68: 617–625.
- Hamilton, D. L. (1981).Cognitive Processes in Stereotyping and Intergroup Behavior. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
- Hastie, Reid (1988). A computer simulation model of person memory.Journal of Experimental Social Psychology 24(5): 423–447.
- Hastie, Reid, and Park, Bernadette (1986). The relationship between memory and judgment depends on whether the task is memory-based or on-line.Psychological Review 93: 258–268.
- Herstein, John A. (1981). Keeping the voter's limits in mind: A cognitive process analysis of decision making in voting.Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 40: 843–861.
- Johnson, Joel, and Judd, Charles (1983). Overlooking the incongruent: Categorization biases in the identification of political statements.Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 45(5): 978–996.
- Kelley, Stanley (1983).Interpreting Elections. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
- Kelley, Stanley, Jr., and Mirer, Thad W. (1974). The simple act of voting.American Political Science Review 68: 572–591.
- Key, V. O., and Munger, Frank (1956). Social determinism and electoral decision: The case of Indiana. In Eugene Burdick and Arthur Brodbeck (eds.),American Voting Behavior. New York: Free Press.
- Kinder, Donald (1978). Political person perception: The asymmetric influences of sentiment and choice on percpetions of political candidates.Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 8: 859–871.
- Krosnick, Jon (1988). Psychological perspectives on political candidate perception: A review of the literature on the projection hypothesis. Paper presented at the Midwest Political Science Association Meeting, Chicago, Illinois, April.
- Lazarsfeld, Paul F., Berelson, Bernard, and Gaudet, H. (1944).The People's Choice. New York: Columbia University Press.
- Lodge, Milton, McGraw, Kathleen and Stroh, Patrick (1989). An impression-driven model of candidate evaluation.American Political Science Review 83(2): in press.
- Marcus, Gregory B., and Converse, Philip E. (1979). A dynamic simultaneous equation model of electoral choice.American Political Science Review 73: 1053–1070.
- McKelvey, Richard D., and Ordeshook, Peter C. (1986). Information, electoral equilibria, and the democratic ideal.Journal of Politics 48: 909–937.
- Natchez, Peter B. (1985).Images of Voting/Visions of Democracy. New York: Basic Books.
- Nisbett, Richard, and Ross, L. (1980).Inference: Strategies and Shortcomings of Social Judgment. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.
- Ostrom, Thomas G. (1988). Computer simulation: The third symbol system.Journal of Experimental and Social Psychology 24: 381–392.
- Page, Benjamin I. (1977). Elections and social choice: The state of the evidence.American Journal of Political Science 21: 639–668.
- Rossi, Peter (1959). Four landmarks in voting research. In Eugene Burdick and Arthur Brodbeck (eds.),American Voting Behavior. Glencoe, IL: Free Press.
- Sebald, Howard (1962). Limitations in communication: Mechanisms of image maintenance in form of selective perception, selective memory and selective distortion.Journal of Communication 12: 142–149.
- Shaffer, William (1974).Computer Simulations of Voting Behavior. New York: Oxford University Press.
- Simon, Herbert A. (1985). Human nature in politics: The dialgoue of psychology with political science.American Political Science Review 79(2): 293–304.
- Tingsten, Herbert (1937).Political Behavior. London: L. P. S. King & Son, Ltd.
- Wyer, Robert, and Srull, Thomas (1986). Human cognition in its social context.Psychological Review 93: 322–359.
- Black-box models of candidate evaluation
Volume 12, Issue 1 , pp 5-18
- Cover Date
- Print ISSN
- Online ISSN
- Kluwer Academic Publishers
- Additional Links