Data-Driven Campaigning as a Disruptive Force

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This essay focuses on the extent to which a new form of ‘data driven’ campaigning (DDC) is emerging in contemporary democracies and how consequential this is, both in historical terms, and also in reality for citizens’ experience of election campaigning. Specifically, does DDC signal the shift into a new and more subversive era of electioneering? Or, is it simply the next stage in the ongoing professionalization of campaigns? In more practical terms what does data-driven campaigning mean for voters? How does it affect citizens, both directly in terms of their actions at the ballot box, and indirectly, with regard to their perceptions of campaigns and the integrity of the election process? We address these questions through a review of current conceptual and empirical findings within the extant literature and conclude by discussing future direction of DDC given the increasing calls for regulatory restraints to be placed on its core activities.
Original languageEnglish
JournalPolitical Communication
Publication statusPublished - 5 May 2023


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