• Question: Psychology is the scientific study of people. What is the best psychological approach to getting people to vote for you?!

    Asked by samsam to Amy, Andy on 24 Jun 2011.
    • Photo: Amy Reeve

      Amy Reeve answered on 23 Jun 2011:

      Hi Sam,

      The answer is flattery and possibly black mail!! failing that a good sob story always seems to work on the X-factor!!

      seriously though i am so pleased to have made it this far 🙂 Some awesome scientists have left before me……..I have had so much fun doing this and answering everyones questions that although i would like to win i will be happy to come in second 🙂

      p.s vote Amy!!! ha ha!! 😀

    • Photo: Andy MacLeod

      Andy MacLeod answered on 24 Jun 2011:

      Hello samsam.

      I’m not a psychologist, but I do work with some. They’re smart people, but I don’t think even they know the secrets of how to influence people’s votes. If they did, I’m sure there’d be a long queue of M(S)Ps seeking their advice. 🙂

      From watching politicians, and my own participation in the democratic process, one answer seems to be “tell people what they want to hear”. But people can be tricky sometimes, you never can tell. So mostly it comes out as “tell people what YOU THINK they want to hear”. But I think people realise when that’s happening. It seems a rather cynical way of going about things. I guess that’s politics for you.

      I don’t think I’d make a very good politician. I’d probably let unfashionable things like ‘ideology’ and ‘morality’ get in the way of winning votes. Even this week has been tough on me. When students ask in live chats “why should we vote for you?”, I can never come up with a good answer.

      Who you vote for is up to you. As are the criteria by which you make that choice. Good luck!