The objective of the first experiment was to test the effectiveness of two different canvassing messages and the objective of the second was to determine whether personal outreach was especially effective. The results from the first experiment suggest that mobilization is difficult in the context of a high-profile presidential election. The results of the second experiment, however, run contrary to this claim. Personal outreach by a friend or family member can apparently influence some people to vote when they would not have otherwise.

Author: David W. Nickerson, August 2009