Syllabus: The Internet in Political Communication

This semester, I will be giving a course at Mannheim University on the use of the internet in digital tools in political communication. This is the first time I’ll be giving this course, so I’m very excited to see how it goes. Here is the syllabus. As always, feedback is welcome.

Syllabus
Digital services have become a common element in political campaigns. Still, the effects of the growing adoption of digital tools and the internet on political communication are far from certain. Public debate oscillates between the expectation of a significant transformation of the political sphere and claims to the internet’s insignificance. While academic debate is more nuanced, it is far from offering a consensus on the effects of digital services and the internet on politics. Over the course of the seminar, we will discuss key-texts addressing the role of digital services and the internet in political communication. We will focus on people’s use of digital services to gather information and comment on politics, the use of digital services by politicians and candidates, and in collective action.

Background readings
Basbøll, T. Research as a Second Language.
Chadwick, A. 2006. Internet Politics: States, Citizens, and New Communication Technologies. Oxford, UK et al.: Oxford University Press.
Chadwick, A. & P. N. Howard (Eds.). 2009. The Routledge Handbook of Internet Politics. New York, NY et al.: Routledge.
Jungherr, A. & H. Schoen. 2013. Das Internet in Wahlkämpfen: Konzepte, Wirkungen und Kampagnenfunktionen. Wiesbaden, DE: Springer VS.
Perloff, R. M. 2014. The Dynamics of Political Communication: Media and Politics in a Digital Age. New York, NY: Routledge.
Reynolds, G. 2012. Presentation Zen: Simple Ideas on Presentation Design and Delivery. 2. ed. Berkeley, CA: New Riders.
Stromer-Galley, J. 2014. Presidential Campaigning in the Internet Age. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.

What is the internet? Stages in its historical development
Mandatory readings
Jungherr, A. & H. Schoen. 2013. “Technische Entwicklung und gesellschaftliche Erwartungen: Eine kurze politische Ideengeschichte des Internets”. Das Internet in Wahlkämpfen: Konzepte, Wirkungen und Kampagnenfunktionen, 11-35. Wiesbaden, DE: Springer VS.

Optional readings
Abbate, J. 1999. Inventing the Internet. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press.
Isaacson, W. 2014. “Ch 7: The Internet” & “Ch 10: Online” & “Ch 11: The Web”. The Innovators: How a Group of Hackers, Geniuses, and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution, 217-262 & 383-404 & 405-466. New York, NY et al.: Simon & Schuster.
Turner, F. 2006. From Counterculture to Cyberculture: Stewart Brand, the Whole Earth Network, and the Rise of Digital Utopianism. Chicago, IL et al.: The University of Chicago Press.

The internet: expectations of political change
Mandatory readings
Neuman, W. R., B. Bimber & M. Hindman. 2011. “The Internet and Four Dimensions of Citizenship”. In: The Oxford Handbook of American Public Opinion and the Media, Eds. R. Y. Shapiro & L. R. Jacobs, 22-42. Oxford, UK et al.: Oxford University Press.

Optional readings
Benkler, Y. 2006. The Wealth of Networks: How Social Production Transforms Markets and Freedom. New Haven, CT et al.: Yale University Press.
Wilhelm, A. G. 2000. Democracy in the Digital Age: Challenges to Political Life in Cyberspace. New York, NY et al.: Routledge.

Presentations
Freelon, D. 2010. “Analyzing online political discussion using three models of democratic communication”. New Media & Society 12(7): 1172-1190.
Karpf, D. 2011. “Open Source Political Community Development: A Five Stage Adoption Process”. Journal of Information Technology & Politics 8(3): 323-345.
Kreiss, D., M. Finn & F. Turner. 2010. “The limits of peer production: Some reminders from Max Weber for the network society”. New Media & Society 13(2): 243-259.

Echo chamber or marketplace of ideas
Mandatory readings
Farrell, H. 2012. “The Consequences of the Internet for Politics.” Annual Review of Political Science 15: 35-52.

Optional readings
McPherson, M., L. Smith-Lovin & J. M. Cook. 2001. “Birds of a Feather: Homophily in Social Networks”. Annual Review of Sociology 27: 415-444.

Presentations
Garrett, R. K. 2009. “Politically motivated reinforcement seeking: Reframing the selective exposure debate”. Journal of Communication 59(4): 676-699.
Gentzkow, M. & J. M. Shapiro. 2011. “Ideological Segregation Online and Offline”. The Quarterly Journal of Economics 126: 1799-1839.

News and political Information on the internet
Mandatory readings
Farrell, H. & D. W. Drezner. 2008. “The Power and Politics of Blogs”. Public Choice 134(1-2): 15-30.

Optional readings
Tewksbury, D. & J. Rittenberger. 2012. News on the Internet: Information and Citizenship in the 21st Century. Oxford, UK et al.: Oxford University Press.

Presentations
Karpf, D. 2010. “Macaca Moments Reconsidered: Electoral Panopticon or Netroots Mobilization?” Journal of Information Technology & Politics 7(2-3): 143-162.
Lawrence, E., J. Sides & H. Farrell. 2010. “Self-Segregation or Deliberation? Blog Readership, Participation, and Polarization in American Politics.” Perspectives on Politics 8(1): 141-157.

The internet as tool for coordination and as a resource
Mandatory readings
Hindman, M. 2005. “The Real Lessons of Howard Dean: Reflections on the First Digital Campaign”. Perspectives on Politics 3(1): 121-128.

Optional readings
Bimber, B. 2003. Information and American Democracy: Technology in the Evolution of Political Power. Cambridge, MA: Cambridge University Press.

Presentations
Karpf, D. 2012. “Ch 1: The New Generation of Political Advocacy Groups” & “Ch 7: Innovation Edges, Advocacy Inflation, and Sedimentary Organizations”. The MoveOn Effect: The Unexpected Transformation of American Political Advocacy, 3-21 & 156-172. Oxford, UK, et al.: Oxford University Press.
Nielsen, R. K. 2011. “Mundane Internet Tools, Mobilizing Practices, and the Coproduction of Citizenship in Political Campaigns.” New Media & Society 13(5): 755-771.

Symbolic uses of the internet in campaigns
Mandatory readings
Kreiss, D. 2012. “Acting in the Public Sphere: The 2008 Obama Campaign’s Strategic Use of New Media to Shape Narratives of the Presidential Race.” Media, Movements, and Political Change 33: 195-223.

Optional readings
Alexander, J.C. 2010. The Performance of Politics: Obama’s Victory and the Democratic Struggle for Power. Oxford, UK et al.: Oxford University Press.
Chadwick, A. 2013. “Symphonic Consonance in Campaign Communication: Reinterpreting Obama for America”. The Hybrid Media System: Politics and Power, 113-136. Oxford, UK et al.: Oxford University Press.
Stromer-Galley, J. 2000. “On-Line Interaction and Why Candidates Avoid it”. Journal of Communication 50(4): 111-132.

Presentations
Kreiss, D. 2011. “Open Source as Practice and Ideology: The Origin of Howard Dean’s Innovations in Electoral Politics.” Journal of Information Technology & Politics 8(3): 367-382.
Kreiss, D. 2014. “Seizing the Moment: The Presidential Campaigns’ Use of Twitter During the 2012 Electoral Cycle”. New Media & Society (Online First).
Stromer-Galley, J. & A. B. Baker. 2006. “Joy and Sorrow of Interactivity on the Campaign Trail: Blogs in the Primary Campaign of Howard Dean.” In: The Internet Election: Perspectives on the Web in Campaign 2004, Eds. A. P. Williams & J. C. Tedesco. Lanham, MD et al.: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers.

Digitally supported organization
Mandatory readings
Kreiss, D. 2012. “Ch 5: Organisation the Obama Campaign”. Taking Our Country Back: The Crafting of Networked Politics from Howard Dean to Barack Obama, 121-154. Oxford, UK et al.: Oxford University Press.

Optional readings
McKenna, E. & Han, H. 2015. Groundbreakers: How Obama’s 2.2 Million Volunteers Transformed Campaigning in America. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
Nielsen, R. K. 2012. Ground Wars: Personalized Communication in Political Campaigns. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
Stromer-Galley, J. 2014. “Ch 5: 2008: Networked Campaigning and Controlled Interactivity”. Presidential Campaigning in the Internet Age, 104-139. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.

Presentations
Cogburn, D. L. & F. K. Espinoza-Vasquez. 2011. “From Networked Nominee to Networked Nation: Examining the Impact of Web 2.0 and Social Media on Political Participation and Civic Engagement in the 2008 Obama Campaign”. Journal of Political Marketing 10(1-2): 189-213.
Enos, R. D. & E. D. Hersh. 2014. “Party Activists as Campaign Advertisers: The Ground Campaign as a Principal-Agent Problem”. American Political Science Review (Forthcoming).
Nielsen, R. K. 2009. “The Labors of Internet-Assisted Activism: Overcommunication, Miscommunication, and Communicative Overload”. Journal of Information Technology & Politics 6(3): 267-280.

Data driven campaigning
Mandatory readings
Stromer-Galley, J. 2014. “Ch 6: 2012: Data-Driven Networked Campaigning”. Presidential Campaigning in the Internet Age, 140-170. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.

Optional readings
Howard, P. N. 2006. New Media Campaigns and the Managed Citizen. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press.
Issenberg, S. 2012. The Victory Lab: The Secret Science of Winning Campaigns. New York, NY: Broadway Books.
Issenberg, S. 2014. “How the Democrats Can Avoid Going Down This November: The new science of Democratic survival”. New Republic (April 27).
Madrigal, A. C. 2012. “When the Nerds Go Marching In”. The Atlantic (November 16).
Sides, J. & L. Vavreck. 2014. “Obama’s Not-So-Big Data”. Pacific Standard (January 21).

Presentations
Enos, R. D. & A. Fowler. The Effects of Large-Scale Campaigns on Voter Turnout: Evidence from 400 Million Voter Contacts. (Working Paper).
Hersh, E. D. & B. F. Schaffner. 2013. “Targeted Campaign Appeals and the Value of Ambiguity”. The Journal of Politics 75(2): 520-534.
Nickerson, D. W & T. Rogers. 2014. “Political Campaigns and Big Data”. Journal of Economic Perspectives 28(2): 51– 74.

The interaction between online communication and political media coverage
Mandatory readings
Chadwick, A. 2013. “Ch 3: The Contemporary Context of Hybridity”. The Hybrid Media System: Politics and Power, 42-59. Oxford, UK et al.: Oxford University Press.

Optional readings
Chadwick, A. 2013. The Hybrid Media System: Politics and Power. Oxford, UK et al.: Oxford University Press.

Presentations
Chadwick, A. 2011. “Britain’s First Live Televised Party Leaders’ Debate: From the News Cycle to the Political Information Cycle”. Parliamentary Affairs 64(1): 24-44.
Jungherr, A. 2014. “The logic of political coverage on Twitter: Temporal dynamics and content.” Journal of Communication 64(2): 239-259.
Trilling, D. 2014. “Two Different Debates? Investigating the Relationship Between a Political Debate on TV and Simultaneous Comments on Twitter”. Social Science Computer Review (Online First).

The use of digital tools in collective action
Mandatory readings
Bennett, W. L. & A. Segerberg. 2012. “The Logic of Connective Action: Digital Media and the Personalization of Contentious Politics.” Information, Communication & Society 15(5): 739-768.

Optional readings
Bennett, W. L. & A. Segerberg. 2013. The Logic of Connective Action: Digital Media and the Personalization of Contentious Politics. Cambridge, MA et al.: Cambridge University Press.
Bimber, B., A. J. Flanagin & C. Stohl. 2012. Collective Action in Organizations: Interaction and Engagement in an Era of Technological Change. Cambridge, MA et al.: Cambridge University Press.
Howard, P. N. & M. Hussain. 2013. Democracy’s Fourth Wave? Digital Media and the Arab Spring. New York, NY et al.: Oxford University Press.

Presentations
Hussain, M. M. & P. N. Howard. 2013. “What Best Explains Successful Protest Cascades? ICTs and the Fuzzy Causes of the Arab Spring.” International Studies Review (15)1: 48-66.
Jungherr, A. & P. Jürgens. 2014. “Through a glass, darkly: tactical support and symbolic association in Twitter messages commenting on Stuttgart 21.” Social Science Computer Review 32(1): 74-89.
Tufekci, Z. & C. Wilson. 2012. “Social Media and the Decision to Participate in Political Protest: Observations From Tahrir Square”. Journal of Communication 62(2): 363-379.

Research on and with the internet
Mandatory readings
Karpf, D. 2012. “Social science research methods in internet time”. Information, Communication & Society 15(5): 639–661.

Optional readings
Cioffi-Revilla, C. 2014. Introduction to Computational Social Science: Principles and Applications. Heidelberg, DE et al.: Springer.
Rogers, R. 2013. Digital Methods. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Presentations
Cioffi-Revilla, C. 2010. “Computational social science”. Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Computational Statistics 2(3): 259–271.
Freelon, D. 2014. “On the Interpretation of Digital Trace Data in Communication and Social Computing Research”. Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media 58(1): 59-75.
Rogers, R. 2010. “Internet Research: The Question of Method”. Journal of Information Technology and Politics 7(2-3): 241-260.