My substantive research interests sit at the intersection of public opinion, political psychology, and political communication. Exposure to information about politics and public opinion has been demonstrated to have a wide range of effects on individuals and political outcomes. As new tools for collecting and disseminating public opinion data are developed and used in practice, it is important to examine and understand how this changing information environment influences political outcomes. My work leverages experimental methods and the affordances of new technologies to explore the factors that shape the individual and political outcomes associated with exposure to political information.
In the contemporary political information environment, individuals are increasingly exposed to data about public opinion that may be represented at varying levels of specificity in terms of demographic groups and geographic areas. Largely due to the ease of conducting web surveys, including those that can easily be run on email lists or website visitors, citizens may now be exposed to more sources of public opinion information than ever before. Understanding the consequences of variation in the types of public opinion or politically-relevant data that are presented to individuals and variation in the sources of this information is important for the study of political communication and political psychology. My work explores these consequences.
Another important focus of my research examines survey methodology and particular features of novel and widely applied survey research methods that may improve measurement quality and/or our understanding of how the unique features of the survey context influence survey respondents and the data that we get from them. In this domain, I have conducted research on ways of improving response rates, methods of assessing and improving data quality, integrating the psychological constructs of mindfulness and mindlessness into survey methodology, examining sources of accuracy and error when identifying likely voters in pre-election polls, coding interviewer and respondent behaviors, and coding interviewer and respondent speech.
I have applied these research interests across academic, government, non-profit, and private-sector research projects, giving me a uniquely broad perspective on the fields of political psychology, political communication, public opinion research, and survey methodology.
“Improving Survey Website Usability.” Invited lecture at the National Science Foundation Conference on The Future of Survey Research. November 8-9, 2012. Arlington, VA.
“Online Survey Research: Findings, Best Practices, and Future Research.” Invited lecture at the Advertising Research Foundation Research Quality Forum. April 7th, 2011, New York, NY.