One theory to rule them all: The cultural cognitive approach to public opinion on everything from abortion to nanotechnology

Friday, February 26, 2010
CNS Conference Room, Girvetz 2320
Dr. John Gastil

John Gastil is Professor in the Department of Communication at the University of Washington where he teaches small group decision making, political deliberation, inter-cultural communication, theory development, and public scholarship. His research centers on political communication and deliberation with vectors to group decision-making, civic engagement, public opinion and attitudes, elections, and governance.

University of Washington

This talk will introduce the theory of cultural cognition, which presents a concise account of how public opinion forms and changes over time in response to political cultural signals from elites. The presentation will review recent evidence on the theory in relation to a wide range of public policy and scientific issues and discuss the potential for deliberation to transcend the cultural divides that forestall broad public consensus. For background information on this work, visit