Electoral Chairs’ Seminars – September 7th

The Effectiveness of Group Appeals 

Ruth Dassonneville (Associate Professor at Université de Montréal)

 Citizens’ socio-demographic characteristics shape their political preferences, resulting in systematic differences in how social groups vote. These group-differences emerge when there are clear associations between social groups and specific parties. Recent work has shown that one way in which parties can create such linkages and strengthen the association between membership of a social group and electoral support is by means of group appeals. However, what we know about such appeals is mostly limited to the role of class-based appeals. By means of a series of vignette experiments embedded in surveys of British voters, we bring insights in the generalizability of symbolic group appeals for other types of societal groups. We test for the effectiveness of group appeals based on class, rural/urban, education, age, gender and ethnic identities. We also examine whether effects are conditioned by respondents’ strength of identity and their perceptions deservingness. Our work provides important insights in the scope conditions of group appeals’ effectiveness.

This content has been updated on 2 September 2022 at 10 h 02 min.