Denise Baron, Department of Methodology
Among both Democrats and Republicans, the current levels of gender and racial representationin the US Congress are unprecedented. Despite an increase in diverse representation, people of colour and women face particular challenges as political candidates, especially in terms of controlling and shaping their public images. While previous research has investigated the role of demographic traits or partisan affiliation in shaping perceptions of politicians, the role of candidates’ ideology, specifically group orientations such as national identity, authoritarianism, and egalitarianism, is less clear. This study investigates the relative influence of political candidates’ various attributes, including demographics and ideology, on how voters perceive them, importantly assessing how multiple identities can intersect and produce positive or negative perceptions. Using a conjoint experiment, we investigate the causal relationship between voters’ group orientations and their perceptions of candidates of varying identities and ideologies.
Read the final report of Denise's summer grant project here.