Le difficoltà dei sondaggi politici
| STUDI DI SOCIOLOGIA - 2010 - 3
N. PAGNONCELLI, Talking about political poll’s problems
In recent years, forecasts based on political surveys have often been contradicted by electoral
results. This essay aims to review possible methodological and epistemological sources of
error related to pre-electoral forecasting. This question relates in the first instance to the use
that customers and the media make of polls. Some other possible bias is to be found in the role
of the media during electoral campaigns, in the relationship between the media and polls (and
politics), and in difficulties arising from specific topics covered by some political surveys.
Finally, some bias comes from epistemological problems innate to political studies themselves
and, above all, to methodological limits related to the choice of polling technique.
Key words: poll, election, response bias, social desirability, coverage error.