Political communication and new media: Theories, concepts, practices

This seminar is concerned with how the proliferation and convergence of networked media and information technologies are impacting and redefining politics. It investigates how political processes, such as elections, protest campaigns and patterns of civic and political engagement are transformed by the use of information and communication technologies (ICTs), and provides an overview of methodological approaches and tools for studying them. The course is split into two parts. The first part will provide students with a theoretical and conceptual understanding of the consequences of ICTs for electoral campaigns, political participation and polarisation, and social movement mobilisation. In addition, each session will focus on how the theoretical approaches examined have been integrated and empirically tested in recent studies with diverse and innovative research designs. The second part of the course will introduce students to social networked analysis, and will provide them with the basic methods and tools for collecting, preparing, analysing and visualising social media data.