12th Annual APSA Pre Conference on Political Communication

Digital Divides

The School of Media and Public Affairs is proud to host the 12th Annual APSA Political Communication Pre Conference. The theme of the pre conference is "Digital Divides".  W. Lance Bennet, Ruddick C. Lawrence Professor Communication and Professor of Political Science at the University of Washington and founder and director of the Center for Communication and Civic Engagement, is the keynote speaker and will lecture on "The Logic of Connective Action: Rethinking Political Organization in the Digital Age." Following three panel sessions, Zac Moffatt and and Michael Slaby will close the conference with a conversation about "Digital Campaigns: 2012 and Beyond". A reception will follow. View the full schedule of events below.

To access the papers listed below, use the password: policomm2014.

Registration: 8:30 - 9 AM

Panel Session 1: 9:00 - 10:15 AM

Communication and Representation in a Digital Age

Panel Discussant: Ken Rogerson

The New Features of the News

Panel Discussant: Dave Karpf

The Internet and Political Behavior

Panel Discussant: Catie Bailard

Panel Session 2: 10:30 AM - 11:45 PM

Hybrid News Functions

Panel Discussant: Talia Stroud

Political Communication During Election Seasons

Panel Discussant: Kimberly Gross

  • Johanna Dunaway, "Divided by Media? Examining Links between Media Choice and Polarization"
  • Lori Young, Stuart Soroka, Stephen J. Farnsworth and S. Robert Lichter, "The Automated Coding of Sentiment in Political News Coverage: Examining Newspaper Coverage of the 2013 Race for Governor of Virginia"
  • Travis Ridout, "Issue Frame Ownership and Use in US Senate Campaign Advertising"

Citizen-Government Interactions

Panel Discussant: J.P. Singh

Keynote Lecture: 12:00 - 12:45 PM

The Logic of Connective Action: Rethinking Political Organization in the Digital Age
W. Lance Bennett, University of Washington, Seattle

Lance Bennett

The contemporary political landscape challenges conventional collective action theories to account for the speed, scale, and flexibility of many forms of action, from crowds to vast NGO issue networks. Most models of collective action focus on the role of bureaucratic organizations, leaders, resources, and collective action frames. However, growing numbers of large-scale mobilizations use digital media and more personalized social networking as replacements for some or most of these organizational elements. This suggests expanding our theoretical framework to include distinct forms of connective action. The logic of connective action shifts attention from resource allocation and brokered ties among formal organizations to the workings of communication networks in which technologies become active network agents. This talk introduces cases from Occupy Wall Street to global climate change networks to illustrate the conditions under which technologies enable large-scale personalized engagement. Connective action explains how communication can operate as an organizational process to produce stable and effective action.

Lunch: 1:00 - 2 PM

Panel Session 3: 2:15 - 3:30 PM

International Citizen Engagement

Panel Discussant: Phil Howard

Political Polarization

Panel Discussant: Andrew Chadwick

Digital Campaigning: 2012 and Beyond: 4:00 - 5:30 PM (Jack Morton Auditorium)
This event is co-sponsored by the School of Media and Public Affairs and The Graduate School of Political Management's Shenkman Seminar Series


Zac Moffatt

Zac Moffatt is the co-founder of Targeted Victory, a technology company and full service interactive advertising agency. Targeted Victory has served over 220 campaigns and organizations, including Mitt Romney for President, General Dynamics, Marco Rubio for Senate, and FedEx.

In 2011 and 2012 Zac was the Digital Director of Mitt Romney for President, where he managed a team responsible for the campaign's digital streategy: online advertising, social media, email marketing, and online fundraising. In 2012 Zac was named one of The Adweek 50, and was featured on PBS Frontline's special "The Digital Campaign."

Michael Slaby

Passionate and committed to helping humanity save the world, Michael Slaby is among the world’s leaders in digital and social media strategy, technology, and how together they can elevate mission-driven organizations.  Currently, he is Managing Partner of Timshel -- a new company working to help solve social, civic, and humanitarian challenges with better technology, engagement capabilities development, and creative capital.  Previously he was Fellow at Shorenstein Center at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.  Michael helped lead Obama for America as Chief Integration and Innovation Officer in 2012 where he oversaw the CTO, CIO, CAO, and ensured effective implementation and integration of technology across the entire campaign and as Deputy Digital Director and Chief Technology Officer in '08.

In addition, Michael has served as a technology and digital strategy advisor as well as board member to initiatives including the United Nations, the U.S. State Department, Fuck Cancer, Bright Pink, I Am That Girl, LiveStrong, Citizen Effect, and Jumo and was named to Crain’s Chicago 40 Under 40 List for 2011 and their Tech 50 List in 2013.  He lives in Chicago with his much more awesome wife, Lydia.

Reception: 5:45 PM

Immediately following "Digital Campaigning: 2012 and Beyond", please join us for food and drinks at a networking reception on the second floor of the Media and Public Affairs Building.

Eventbrite - 2014 APSA Political Communication Pre-Conference

The 12th Annual APSA Preconference on Political Communication is sponsored by the APSA Political Communication Division, the School of Media and Public Affairs at the George Washington University, and the Wilson Grand Communications Fund for the School of Media and Public Affairs.

Eventbrite - 2014 APSA Political Communication Pre-Conference