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Mapping the Voting Advice Application Literature: A Scoping Review Differentiating Distinctive Fields in the Study of Voting Advice Applications

Elections
Political Competition
Political Parties
Voting Behaviour
Camille Tremblay-Antoine
Université Laval
Camille Tremblay-Antoine
Université Laval
Yannick Dufresne
Department of Political Science, Université Laval
Clifton van der Linden
University of Toronto
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Abstract

Over the last decade, an entire academic literature has emerged examining the nature and role of voting advice applications (VAAs) in democratic societies. This article proposes a review of this literature. Three areas of study seem to define the general research agenda. The first focusses on the design and development of VAAs. More specifically, work in this area discusses the way VAA questions are selected, how political parties are coded, and what algorithms are used to match voters to parties. A second area looks at the effects of these applications on voters’ attitudes and behaviours. Finally, the third, and substantially more limited, area of study looks at the use of the large N data collected by VAAs. Given the simultaneous unique opportunities these data represent for the assessment of political behaviour and unique challenges they pose with respect to representativity, we argue this third area should be a priority for future research in this emerging field.