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The connection between moral positions and moral arguments drives opinion change
Institute for Futures Studies, Stockholm, Sweden; Centre for Cultural Evolution, Stockholm University, Stockholm, Sweden.
Institute for Futures Studies, Stockholm, Sweden.
Mälardalen University, School of Education, Culture and Communication, Educational Sciences and Mathematics. Centre for Cultural Evolution, Stockholm University, Stockholm, Sweden. (MAM)
Mälardalen University, School of Education, Culture and Communication, Educational Sciences and Mathematics. Centre for Cultural Evolution, Stockholm University, Stockholm, Sweden. (MAM)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7164-0924
2019 (English)In: Nature human behaviour, ISSN 2397-3374, Vol. 3, no 9, p. 922-930Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Liberals and conservatives often take opposing positions on moral issues. But what makes a moral position liberal or conservative? Why does public opinion tend to become more liberal over time? And why does public opinion change especially fast on certain issues, such as gay rights? We offer an explanation based on how different positions connect with different kinds of moral arguments. Based on a formal model of opinion dynamics, we predicted that positions better connected to harm and fairness arguments will be more popular among liberals and will become more popular over time among liberals and conservatives. Finally, the speed of this trend will be faster the better the position connects to harm and fairness arguments. These predictions all held with high accuracy in 44 years of polling on moral opinions. The model explains the connection between ideology and moral opinions, and generates precise predictions for future opinion change.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
NLM (Medline) , 2019. Vol. 3, no 9, p. 922-930
Keywords [en]
article, ideology, male, morality, prediction, public opinion, velocity
National Category
Philosophy Ethics Bioinformatics (Computational Biology) Other Mathematics
Research subject
Mathematics/Applied Mathematics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-45317DOI: 10.1038/s41562-019-0647-xISI: 000485813100012PubMedID: 31308486Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85072154616OAI: oai:DiVA.org:mdh-45317DiVA, id: diva2:1355066
Available from: 2019-09-26 Created: 2019-09-26 Last updated: 2019-10-14Bibliographically approved

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Jansson, FredrikEriksson, Kimmo

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CiteExportLink to record
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  • apa
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