PhD position (UK): The Impact of New Technologies on Political Communication during Elections

The Internet and other new technologies (smartphones, social media, Web 2.0, etc.) are revolutionising political communication (e.g. during election campaigns). Traditionally, politicians and their political parties devised a set of election campaign themes and messages and conveyed these to the electorate, or particular sections of the electorate, via advertising on billboards, in newspapers, and on radio and TV. In addition, they enlisted an army of canvassers to go door to door, posted out election flyers and other campaign materials, targeted swing voters by telephone and concentrated their resources on key marginal constituencies. More sophisticated election campaigns utilized commercial geo-demographic systems such as Mosaic, or developed their own (i.e. the Conservatives’ Voter Vault and Labour’s Contact Creator), in an attempt to reach particular categories of voter. The essential point is that such election campaigns were centrally-organized and top-down and they attempted to connect with the electorate as a collection of aggregated individuals.

This PhD project is at the cutting edge of political communication – a sub-field of media and communication studies and political science – and has the potential to make a significant contribution to the University’s impact and internationalisation agendas.

More information: here.