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Elections Are (Not) Exciting: Need for Cognition and Electoral Behaviour

Journal article
Authors Jacob Sohlberg
Published in Scandinavian Political Studies
Volume 42
Issue 2
Pages 138-150
ISSN 0080-6757
Publication year 2019
Published at Department of Political Science
Pages 138-150
Language en
Subject categories Applied Psychology, Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalization Studies)


Need for cognition (NFC) is the personality trait that describes differences in the enjoyment of cognitive efforts. By relying on data collected over two elections in Sweden in 2014, I show the trait's multifaceted political relevance. Individuals who enjoy cognitive challenges are more likely to think that it matters what government that is formed after the election, engage with campaign information, favor complex news over simple news and select stronger reasons for vote choice over weaker, e.g., ideology over habit. Overall, the results suggest that election studies would benefit from measuring need for cognition.

Page Manager: Webmaster|Last update: 9/11/2012

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