Voters' Justifications in Direct Democratic Votes

11.02.2019 - 12:00 to 13:30
Location : 
A 5,6 Raum A 231
Type of Event : 
AB B-Kolloquium
Dr. Céline Colombo
Lecturer affiliation: 
Universität Zürich

While the popularity and use of direct democratic instruments has been growing in recent years, the criticism that citizens lack the necessary competence to make these important policy decisions persists. It is therefore key to understand how voters actually form their opinions in such ballot decisions. In my research, I study voters' decision making in direct democratic votes through a combination of quantitative content analysis of voters' justifications, opinion experiments and longitudinal survey data in Switzerland and other European countries. In particular, I am interested in the complexity and types of voters' justifications, as well as in their use of heuristic cues versus policy arguments in decision-making.