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date: 26 September 2017

Abstract and Keywords

Research on social networks and voting behavior has been largely limited to long-established democracies. In young democracies with unstable party systems and low levels of mass partisan identification, such networks should be even more important. This chapter examines egocentric political discussion networks in Brazil, where political discussion is plentiful and exposure to disagreement is somewhat more frequent than in the United States. Over the course of campaigns, such conversation affects voting choices and helps citizens learn about candidates and their issue positions; networks are especially important for learning among low-status individuals. The chapter highlights the availability of two important panel data sets incorporating design elements that can improve inference regarding network effects: the 2002–2006 Two-City Brazilian Panel Study and the 2014 Brazilian Electoral Panel Survey.

Keywords: political discussion, networks, Brazil, voting behavior, campaigns

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