Everything you've wanted to know about RP politics, but were afraid to ask.

Position of names on ballot could affect candidates’ chances: expert

Posted by akosistella on March 12, 2010

Dr. Felix Muga, a mathematics professor at the Ateneo de Manila, cites Benford’s law in statistics, which states that “in lists of numbers from many (but not all) real-life sources of data… the first digit 1 is almost one third of the time, and larger digits occur as the leading digit with lower and lower frequency…”

Thus, if a candidate is associated with the numeral 1 or is first on the list, he or she has 30 percent more chances of “occurring” or being chosen than others. Those close to his or her name have good but lesser chances.

“The effect is usually on the undecided voters. Their tendency is to go to the number one on the list first,” Muga says.

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