Browsing: Political

The latest news about political psychology research

Distracted driving data and laws to prevent it don’t match up

Cell phone distractions account for more than 300,000 car crashes each year. As a result, most states have put laws in place to limit or prohibit the use of mobile devices while driving. But a new study led by Temple University finds a widening gap between the evidence on distracted driving and the laws being passed to address the problem.

Perceived media bias can lead to political action

Politicians should be careful when they rail against mainstream news media. A study from North Carolina State University shows that perceived bias of media outlets can lead to increased political engagement – but only on specific issues. When there is a general perception of bias in the news media it actually results in increased apathy among citizens.

Spouses select partners based on social and political attitudes

Though ‘variety is the spice of life’ and ‘opposites attract,’ most people marry only those whose political views align with their own, according to new research from Rice University and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Political scientists found that political attitudes were among the strongest shared traits and even stronger than qualities like personality or looks.

Artful dodgers: Responding but not answering often undetected

How can some people respond to a question without answering the question, yet satisfy their listeners? This skill of ‘artful dodging’ and how to better detect it are explored in an article published by the American Psychological Association.

Psychologist links election wins with higher internet porn use

Some celebrate a political candidate’s victory with a party. Others, according to a Rutgers–Camden researcher, choose porn. Rutgers–Camden psychologist Charlotte Markey and husband Patrick Markey of Villanova University published findings in the journal Evolution and Human Behavior that suggest vicarious winning in elections yields a higher usage of internet porn.

‘Alternative Vote’ system could lock out extremist candidates

Moving to an Alternative Vote (AV) electoral system could lock extremist candidates out of office and ensue that the least popular politician has the least chance of winning according to an analysis by University of Warwick researcher Professor Dennis Leech.

Some people’s climate beliefs shift with weather

Social scientists are struggling with a perplexing earth-science question: as the power of evidence showing manmade global warming is rising, why do opinion polls suggest public belief in the findings is wavering? Part of the answer may be that some people are too easily swayed by the easiest, most irrational piece of evidence at hand: their own estimation of the day’s temperature.

Political views are reflected in brain structure

We all know that people at opposite ends of the political spectrum often really can’t see eye to eye. Now, a new report published online on April 7th in Current Biology, a Cell Press publication, reveals that those differences in political orientation are tied to differences in the very structures of our brains.

What the world needs now? More wisdom

While all nations need wise leaders, the Middle East and North Africa require sensible leaders with fresh outlooks who are in antithesis to self-serving dictators of the past.

Voters swayed by interactive ‘worm’ graph during election debate

Research from Royal Holloway, University of London and the University of Bristol calls into question people’s ability to form their own judgements about their preferred election candidate after finding voters could be heavily swayed by ‘the worm’ – a continuous response tracking measure this is increasingly being used in live election debates around the world.

Too many choices can be a bad thing

Too much choice can be a bad thing—not just for the individual, but for society. Thinking about choices makes people less sympathetic to others and less likely to support policies that help people, according to a study published in an upcoming issue of Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.

Contented citizens vote against change

US citizens who have a high quality of life are more engaged in the direct democracy process, according to Ryan Yonk from Utah State University and Professor Shauna Reilly from Northern Kentucky University in the US. Their study, looking at the effects of quality of life on voter participation in direct democracy elections, demonstrates that quality of life is a strong predictor of voter turnout.