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Canvassing

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Canvassing is a practice used in political campaigns where candidates, volunteers, or paid professionals reach out to households to engage with voters. It helps identify supporters, persuade undecided voters, and build voter lists for future campaign strategies. The term originated from the process of sifting by shaking in a canvas sheet, with early organized canvassing seen in Roman Republic and England. Canvassing is used globally, with various techniques adopted in countries like the US, Canada, Australia, and India. Its effectiveness varies, with some studies showing increased voter turnout through canvassing. The practice is protected under the First Amendment, as affirmed by US Supreme Court rulings. Researchers continue to explore the impact of canvassing on voter behavior and political persuasion[1].

Terms definitions
1. persuasion. Persuasion is a multifaceted concept with roots in various forms and theories. It incorporates techniques like propaganda, heuristic persuasion, and the use of Aristotle's communication methods. It also involves psychological theories impacting behavior and the theory of planned behavior to predict and alter actions. Persuasion plays a significant role in various domains such as politics, sales, advocacy, and business communication and can be delivered through written, spoken, or visual methods. The intersection of neuroscience and persuasion is also a critical aspect, linking brain function with persuasive techniques. Furthermore, persuasion varies across cultures, influencing activities like buying, selling, advertising, and parenting. Lastly, successful persuasion involves authority, trustworthiness, and techniques such as scarcity principle, reciprocity, commitment, and social proof.
Canvassing (Wikipedia)

Canvassing, also known as door knocking or phone banking, is the systematic initiation of direct contact with individuals, commonly used during political campaigns. Canvassing can be done for many reasons: political campaigning, grassroots fundraising, community awareness, membership drives, and more. Campaigners knock on doors to contact people personally. Canvassing is used by political parties and issue groups to identify supporters, persuade the undecided, and add voters to the voters list through voter registration, and it is central to get out the vote operations. It is the core element of what political campaigns call the ground game or field.

Bill George door-to-door canvassing for Obama in the 2008 election year

British politician Jack Straw (on the right with a red rosette) canvassing with local councilors in Blackburn, Lancashire, in 2008

Organized political canvassing became a central tool of contested election campaigns in Britain, and has remained a core practice performed by thousands of volunteers at each election there, and in many countries with similar political systems.

Canvassing can also refer to a neighborhood canvass performed by law enforcement in the course of an investigation. This is a systematic approach to interviewing residents, merchants, and others who are in the immediate vicinity of a crime and may have useful information.

In the United States, the compilation of election returns and validation of the outcome that forms the basis of the official results is also called canvassing.

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