1997 年 12 巻 p. 28-40,293
By focusing on a social psychological point of view, this article provides reviews of recent and important findings in the field of voting behavior.
First, as a premise for the development of research in the 90s, the authors briefly summarize several approaches in the voting behavior study, such as ideological, economical, and cognitive psychological approaches.
Second, it was argued that studies in the 90s are largely affected by the development of cognitive psychology, for the earliest instances, Lau and Sears (Eds.) (1986) and Graber (1984). The focuses of research are dispersed on schematic information processing or use of heuristics by the voters. Usually the researchers emphasize the reasoning process of voters which is very different from the point of view by Converse' famous idea of innocent voter (1964).
Third, interest in the impact of mass media has revived, partly due to huge changes in the media environment and partly due to the interest in the information processing aspect of news reception. Several researchers pursued to elucidate how the social realities of the Presidential elections are formed by using multimethod approach (experiment, focused-group interview, depth interview, social survey, and news content analysis).
Fourth, it is notable that social network approach has come into the field. This approach was inaugurated by Huckfeldt (1986) and is differentiated from the traditional two-step flow type studies in that it focuses on the information environment which is formed by important others surrounding each voter.
Fifth, alternative cognitive approach is found in the study of public opinion such as the “spiral of silence” hypothesis and the “third person effect” hypothesis.
The authors tried to show how promising all the areas in the field is, and also to show how the areas are intertwined with each other.