How to scale coded text units without bias: A response to Gemenis

Published in Electoral Studies, 2012

Recommended citation: Kenneth Benoit, Michael Laver, Will Lowe, and Slava Jankin Mikhaylov (2012). "How to scale coded text units without bias: A response to Gemenis." Electoral Studies, 31(3): 605-608.

Coding non-manifesto documents as if they were genuine policy platforms produced at election time clearly raises serious issues with error when these codings are used in the standard manner to estimate left-right policy positions. In addition to the long term solution of improving the document base of the Manifesto Project identified by Gemenis (2012), we argue that immediate gains in manifesto-based estimates of policy positions can be realised by using the confrontational logit scales from Lowe et al. (2011), which addresses the problems of scale content and scale construction that are exacerbated by but not unique to the problems found in proxy documents.

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