Munich Center for Mathematical Philosophy (MCMP)

Breadcrumb Navigation


CogSci Computational Modelling Prize - How Communication Can Make Voters Choose Less Well


The conference paper How Communication Can Make Voters Choose Less Well authored by Ulrike Hahn, Momme von Sydow and Christoph Merdes has been awarded the Computational Modeling Prize in Applied Cognition at the 40th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society.

Recent political surprises in Western democracies have recharged debate about the extent to which voters might vote against their own self-interest as well as the possible reasons why they might do so. One possible strand of explanation involves voter ignorance, yet political scientists are quick to point out that there is evidence to suggest that voters have always seemed comparatively ignorant of factual details involved in political campaigns, seemingly ruling out such explanation. However, voting involves the aggregation of individual’s votes, and the quality of the collective outcome may change not just in response to changes in individual’s competence, but also to changes in the degree of correlation between voters, and the extent to which they base their votes on private or shared, public knowledge.

The paper describes simulations with agent-based models examines how communication between agents in a social network may decrease their collective accuracy as they vote on a matter of fact.

Congratulations Ulrike, Momme and Christoph!