Digital Media and Political Engagement Worldwide: A Comparative Study

Overview

This book focuses on the impact of digital media use for political engagement across varied geographic and political contexts, using a diversity of methodological approaches and datasets. The book addresses an important gap in the contemporary literature on digital politics, identifying context dependent and transcendent political consequences of digital media use. While the majority of the empirical work in this field has been based on studies from the United States and United Kingdom, this volume seeks to place...
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Digital Media and Political Engagement Worldwide

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Overview

This book focuses on the impact of digital media use for political engagement across varied geographic and political contexts, using a diversity of methodological approaches and datasets. The book addresses an important gap in the contemporary literature on digital politics, identifying context dependent and transcendent political consequences of digital media use. While the majority of the empirical work in this field has been based on studies from the United States and United Kingdom, this volume seeks to place those results into comparative relief with other regions of the world. It moves debates in this field of study forward by identifying system-level attributes that shape digital political engagement across a wide variety of contexts. The volume brings together research and scholars from North America, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, and Asia. The evidence analyzed across the fifteen cases considered in the book suggests that engagement with digital environments influences users' political orientations and that contextual features play a significant role in shaping digital politics.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"The strength of this impressive volume lies in its exploration of online politics beyond the well-researched U.S. and UK examples. The authors make a sophisticated and compelling case for the importance of culture and context as shapers of technological effects." -Stephen Coleman, Professor of Political Communication, University of Leeds

"Understanding how digital media are affecting the dynamics of citizens' engagement has become the holy grail of political communication research. Bringing together research conducted by nineteen international scholars in fifteen different countries, Digital Media and Political Engagement Worldwide brings us closer to this goal by comparatively exploring the variety of pathways through which digital media influence political engagement; who is most likely to engage politics through digital media and how this choice results from the interaction of individual characteristics and differences in the nature of online and offline politics; and the sociopolitical contexts in which digital politics occurs." -Michael X. Delli Carpini, Walter H. Annenberg Dean of the Annenberg School for Communication, University of Pennsylvania

"This book is a major new study that provides one of the most comprehensive answers to date to the question of how digital media is affecting political engagement. Its depth and breadth of coverage is unique and striking in that it brings together highly sophisticated empirical analyses of Internet use and participation across a range of democratic and non-democratic contexts. From single case studies to multi-country analyses, the consistently positive findings that are reported mark an important step forward in the literature in terms of addressing ongoing debates about whether the Internet is good or bad for democracy. Looking to the future, the book also offers powerful insights into future trends by calling for researchers to consider online participation as a multidimensional phenomenon that is pushing forms of political engagement into a new, more social, horizontal, and expressive space." - Rachel Gibson, The University of Manchester

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Product Details

Meet the Author

Eva Anduiza has been an associate professor at the Department of Political Science of the Autonomous University of Barcelona since 2003, where she is also principal investigator of the research group on Democracy, Elections and Citizenship. She holds a degree in political science and sociology from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, a postgraduate diploma on social science data analysis from the University of Essex and a PhD in political and social sciences from the European University Institute in Florence. She has published in several journals including the European Journal of Political Research; the International Journal of Regional and Urban Research; Information, Communication and Society and the Journal of Information Technologies and Politics. She has also contributed to several books on political participation.

Michael J. Jensen is a postdoctoral fellow at the Institute of Government and Public Policy at the Autonomous University of Barcelona. He holds a BA in political science with departmental honors from the University of Iowa and an MA and PhD in political science from the University of California, Irvine. He has been visiting fellow at the New Political Communication Unit Royal Holloway College of London, lecturer and postdoctoral research fellow at the University of California, Irvine, School of Social Sciences and visiting professor at the Open University of Catalonia. He has worked on the People, Organizations and Information Technology Project (POINT) at the Center for Research on Information Technology and Organizations (CRITO); the Internet and Political Participation project in Spain at the Autonomous University of Barcelona and the Elections and Digital Media Project at the London School of Economics. He has published in Information, Communication and Society and The Information Society.

Laia Jorba has been an adjunct professor at the Department of Political Science of the Autonomous University of Barcelona since 2004, where she is a member of the research group Democracy, Elections and Citizenship. She holds a degree in political science, an MA in social science research and a PhD in political science from the Autonomous University of Barcelona. She has been a visiting researcher at the New School of Social Research in New York and a postdoctoral researcher with the project Internet and Political Participation in Spain at the Autonomous University of Barcelona and with the Social Capital and Political Integration of Migrants project in Spain at the University of Murcia. She has published in Migrations, Société, Revista Migrações, Revista Internacional de Sociologia, Revista Española de Ciencia Política and Gestión y Análisis de Políticas Públicas.

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Table of Contents

1. Introduction Michael J. Jensen, Laia Jorba and Eva Anduiza; 2. The impact of digital media on citizenship in a global perspective Laia Jorba and Bruce Bimber; 3. Recent shifts in the relationship between the Internet and democratic engagement in Britain and the United States Andrew Chadwick; 4. Political engagement and the Internet in the 2008 U.S. presidential elections: a panel survey Allison Hamilton and Caroline J. Tolbert; 5. Online political participation in the United States and Spain Michael J. Jensen and Eva Anduiza; 6. Internet use and political attitudes in Europe Clelia Colombo, Carol Galais and Aina Gallego; 7. Digital media and offline political participation in Spain Marta Cantijoch; 8. Online participation in Italy: contextual influences and political opportunities Cristian Vaccari; 9. On the causal nature of the relationship between Internet access and political engagement: evidence from German panel data Martin Kroh and Hannes Neiss; 10. The uses of digital media for contentious politics in Latin America Yanina Welp and Jonathan Wheatley; 11. Opening closed regimes: civil society, information infrastructure, and political Islam Muzammil M. Hussain and Philip N. Howard; 12. Digital media and political attitudes in China Min Tang, Laia Jorba and Michael J. Jensen; 13. Conclusions Laia Jorba, Michael J. Jensen and Eva Anduiza.
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