The Living Thing / Notebooks :

Applied psephology

Usefulness: 🔧
Novelty: 💡
Uncertainty: 🤪 🤪 🤪
Incompleteness: 🚧 🚧 🚧

Tom Gauld:

Voting system

On the practicalities of voter modeling in elections, for the purpose of influencing how they vote, with special reference to Australian elections. Marketing psychology for governments, and for those who wish to have control of governments. This also relates, in these increasingly polarised times, to the difficulties of getting along.

For now, a smattering of links.

🚧 mention problems of ecological inference, Simpson’s paradoxes in electoral demographics, “Symbolic data analysis” for census data, response bias, survey design etc. Finish up with practical tips.

Betting on them

You mean in a prediction market? See the nice plots from David Rothschild via Andrew Gelman, and Davis’s introduction to shortcoming, and consider also Taleb’s arbitrage argument. (Taleb 2018)

Practicalities

Australian specifics

Peter Ellis, on his Australian Federal Election 2019 forecasts post introduces his useful ozfedelect package for R, for a bit of easy modelling. More from that author. eechidna, by Carson Sievert, Rob Hyndman, Diane Cook and Heike Hofmann and many others, has a spatiotemporal electorate data from 2001-2016, and I think ozfedelect builds upon that? Kevin Bonham does a lengthy postmortem about the local polling fails such as suspiciously low variance, assertions they lack education-based poststratification. Other local experts include Adrian Beaumont.

On voters strategically changing electorates

What are the marginal benefits of treating politics like the porkbarrel machine it seems to be and behave accordingly? I’d like it to be otherwise, but let’s work with what we have.

Optimal electoral marginalness, inverse gerrymandering etc. Invading marginal electorates. Organised opposition means one would be are more likely to claim council seats as a side benefit.

How well could you do this? How static are the preferences of the voters?

Refs

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Baldassarri, Delia, and Guy Grossman. 2013. “The Effect of Group Attachment and Social Position on Prosocial Behavior. Evidence from Lab-in-the-Field Experiments.” Edited by Angel Sánchez. PLoS ONE 8 (3): e58750. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0058750.

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