Forecasting Elections Using Expert Surveys: An Application to U.S. Presidential Elections

11 Pages Posted: 30 Jun 2008 Last revised: 30 Dec 2011

See all articles by J. Scott Armstrong

J. Scott Armstrong

University of Pennsylvania - Marketing Department

Date Written: June 29, 2008

Abstract

Prior research offers a mixed view of the value of expert surveys for long-term election forecasts. On the positive side, experts have more information about the candidates and issues than voters do. On the negative side, experts all have access to the same information. Based on prior literature and on our experiences with the 2004 presidential election and the 2008 campaign so far, we have reason to believe that a simple expert survey (the Nominal Group Technique) is preferable to Delphi. Our survey of experts in American politics was quite accurate in the 2004 election. Following the same procedure, we have assembled a new panel of experts to forecast the 2008 presidential election. Here we report the results of the first survey, and compare our experts' forecasts with predictions by the Iowa Electronic Market.

Suggested Citation

Armstrong, J. Scott, Forecasting Elections Using Expert Surveys: An Application to U.S. Presidential Elections (June 29, 2008). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1153117 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1153117

J. Scott Armstrong (Contact Author)

University of Pennsylvania - Marketing Department ( email )

700 Jon M. Huntsman Hall
3730 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6340
United States
215-898-5087 (Phone)
215-898-2534 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://marketing.wharton.upenn.edu/people/faculty/armstrong.cfm

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