Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Political Science Weighs In: Sarko Will Lose

Political scientists think they know how to forecast election results from economic and political data. Martial Foucault and Richard Nadeau analyze the French presidential election in this perspective and predict a narrow win for Hollande (caveat emptor, h/t John Sides):

Who will win the next French presidential election? Forecasting electoral results from political-economy models is a recent tradition in France. In this article, we pursue this effort by estimating a vote function based on both local and national data for the elections held between 1981 and 2007. This approach allows us to circumvent the smallN problem and to produce more robust and reliable results. Based on a model including economic (unemployment) and political (approval and previous results) variables, we predict the defeat, although by a relatively small margin, of the right-wing incumbent Nicolas Sarkozy in the second round of the French presidential election to be held in May 2012.

3 comments:

bernard said...

I beg to disagree. During the period 1979-82 when I was a young researcher inside a CNRS macroeconomic modelling group in France, I distinctly remember my "boss" talking to me about these types of models and showing to me some research. That is over 30 years ago.

Cincinna said...

Nothing is a sure thing.
These models are academic hypotheticals, not based on real life on the ground perceptions.
Intervening major events, impossible to firesee and factor in have a greater impact.

Mitch Guthman said...

I’m sure these guys have probably developed numerous foolproof betting systems for roulette and horse racing, too.