A month before the general election, Michael Blastland examines whether or not the way people vote can really be changed and asks if political persuasion is pointless.
A month before the general election, Michael Blastland examines whether or not the way we vote can really be changed, and asks if political persuasion is pointless.
In a series of experiments run in the Human Zoo lab, the team gauges how opinions are formed in members of the public, and the extent to which psychological 'tricks' can provoke a shift in mindset.
How does a politician's physical appearance impact on how their policies are perceived? Can the temperature of our lab have an impact when our subjects debate evidence for man-made global warming? Can opinion on an issue such as crime be changed when the facts are presented?
At the heart of the matter are our biases and judgements - how we perceive the world and how rationally or irrationally we behave.
Michael is guided by Nick Chater, Professor of Behavioural Science at Warwick University, and resident reporter Timandra Harkness sets out to discover how other countries use behavioural science in an attempt to win elections.
Produced by Dom Byrne and Eve Streeter
A Pier production for BBC Radio 4.