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Political Science in Europe

The Role of Voting Advice Applications in the 2019 EP Election

European Politics
 
European Union
 
Internet
 
Electoral Behaviour
 
Public Opinion
 
Voting Behaviour
 
European Parliament
 
Presenter
Diego Garzia
Université de Lausanne
Authors
Diego Garzia
Université de Lausanne
Alexander H. Trechsel
University of Lucerne

Abstract

In the last few years, a growing strand of academic research has focused on the impact of these informational tools on their users. The wide amount of readily available information provided by VAAs to users has been shown to contribute to reducing the transactional costs involved in gathering relevant political information. Available evidence also supports the idea that VAAs increase interest in, and knowledge of political matters, creating better turnouts for elections as a result.
The aim of this paper is to twofold. The first aim is to reassess the available evidence on VAAs and political behavior. The second aim is to introduce the VoteMatch 2019 project, a Europe-wide VAA for the forthcoming EP elections developed by the European University Institute in Florence in collaboration with all the major national VAA providers in Europe (including StemWijzer and Wahl-O-Mat). The paper thus discusses potential benefits stemming from the implementation of VAAs in terms of increasing turnout rates, fostering policy-based vote choices against a pervasive personalization trend, and supporting the quality of electoral democracy as a result
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