Research event

Digital Democracy Lab: An Infrastructure to Study the Implications of Digital Technology for Democracy

A presentation by Fabrizio Gilardi (University of Zurich). This event is part of the Digital Governance Research Colloquium.

Fabrizio Gilardi ( is Professor of Policy Analysis in the Department of Political Science of the University of Zurich. He is the director of the Digital Democracy Lab (, which studies the implications of digital technology for politics and democracy. @fgilardi

The talk introduces the research infrastructure and datasets constructed and collected at the Digital Democracy Lab of the University of Zurich since January 2019 ( The Digital Democracy Lab consists of an infrastructure to collect, store, process, and analyze text and social media data as well as survey response data via an online panel, and of a platform tracking political debates and opinions online and offline and presenting the analyses in a format accessible to the general public. The talk first describes the infrastructure we built to collect and store various types of unstructured data, the methods we developed to classify and analyze them, and the datasets that we assembled. Second, the talk illustrates their potential with analyses of the online campaign in the context of the 2019 Swiss national elections, some of which we published during the election campaign. Finally, the paper outlines a framework for making the infrastructure, methods, and datasets available to the broader research community.

Prior registration is not required.