Title: Assessing the effects of friend-to-friend texting on turnout in the 2020 U.S. presidential election
Authors: Aaron Schein - Columbia University (United States) [presenting]
Abstract: Political campaigns in recent elections have started to embrace friend-to-friend organizing, in which volunteers organize and encourage their own close contacts to cast a ballot on Election Day. The premise of friend-to-friend organizing is that get out the vote (GOTV) encouragements are more effective when delivered by trusted messengers, like friends or family members, than when delivered by strangers, as is the case with traditional GOTV tactics like door-to-door canvassing or phone-banking. This is among the first large-scale experimental studies to assess the causal effects of friend-to-friend GOTV tactics. We find small treatment effects of friend-to-friend text-message reminders using data from the 2020 US election.