Photo: Jason E. Powell
Whether you were at a church or a government building might have affected how you voted today.A study published in the International Journal for the Psychology of Religion earlier this year says that during street interviews conducted in the Netherlands and the U.K., people who were near churches tended to give more conservative answers than those near government buildings.
Similar results were concluded in a 2008 study when researchers from Stanford University found that participants who were interviewed near schools were more likely to support education funding initiative.
The researchers say that these results could derive from “the effects of contextual priming,” which means that “environmental cues can unconsciously affect decisions and behaviour by activating certain associative areas of the brain,” according to the Smithsonian.com blog.
So what does this mean? The Smithsonian blog suggests that perhaps we should keep polling locations away from churches and schools.
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