This research is an exploratory study that aims to demonstrate how the use of the Internet to make political communication increases the politicalparticipation of citizens. Thus, the rese- arch problem of this study is: "Do citizens see political communication on the Internet as faci- litating the politicalparticipation of the electorate, especially during the electoral period of the Portuguese legislative elections in 2015?"To answer this research question, we have outlined the following objectives: (1) to inquire whether the electorate had contact with the political informa- tion/communication shared via the Internet; (2) assess which political communication devices / platforms respondents preferred; and (3) ascertain whether respondents see the Internet, especi- ally social networks, as a facilitator for politicalparticipation. As an exploratory study, an online questionnaire was applied between October 7 and 26, 2015 (right after the elections). The sam- ple, selected for convenience, consists of 550 people, aged between 16 and 87 years, mostly from Portugal and with higher education. About two thirds of the respondents are male, which trans- lates into 367 respondents, corresponding to 66.73% of the total. The remaining individuals who answered the questionnaire are female, accounting for 183 women, 33.27% of the value obtained.
However, the EIUDI is not without its drawbacks. From a data access point of view, indicator-level data are not publicly available, thus inhibiting our ability to investigate different dimensions of participation in political process (e.g. turnout, consultation in public policy, civil society strength). Moreover, it mixes substantively different dimensions of participation. It bundles in the same variable membership in political parties and in political non-governmental organisations—dimensions that can be in tension in many polities. Also, it is problematic to measure citizens’ engagement with politics by a measure of “citizens’ interest in politics”. This is not so much participation, as (and also disputably) a pre-condition for participation. The same reasoning applies to questions like “The preparedness of population to take part in lawful demonstrations”, since willingness to attend demonstrations is obviously not the same thing as actually doing it. The same could be said of considering “Adult literacy”, “interest in and follows politics in the news” and “perceptions of democracy.” A case can be made that these are preconditions for participation but it is hard to sustain the case that these are actual components of politicalparticipation. Finally, the question about the degree to which “authorities make a serious effort to promote politicalparticipation” is unspecific over which arena that effort is directed. Is it about electoral participation, civil society or political parties? And what does it mean, specifically? What are those efforts about?
fennema and tillie (1999) do not use Putnam’s phrase “bonding social capi- tal”, but since these organisations in the amsterdam-turkish community are gene- rally ethnically homogeneous we may rephrase their research finding as “the more bonding social networks, the more politicalparticipation” – which contradicts our hypothesis that bridging social contacts facilitate politicalparticipation. fennema and tillie’s amsterdam research was later replicated in several european cities with various results. in some cities, there appeared to be no clear and positive effect of ethnic membership on political involvement. in other studies, informal networks (‘friendships’) appeared to be more important in explaining voting behaviour rather than membership of organisations. in sum, in the replication studies the relationship between ethnic civic communities and politicalparticipation is not as clear as in fennema and tillie’s original study (Jacobs et al., 2004; Koopmans, 2004; togeby, 2004; cf. Peters, 2010: 21-14). another limitation of fennema and tillie’s original study is that they have not examined their argument using individual data about the extent of social capital and its relationship with politicalparticipation as we will do in this analysis.
Regarding participation, the variables are similar to those employed by Freedom House, that is, basic thresholds that do not allow for deeply nuanced analyses. Also, welfare regime is only a proxy for inequalities in politicalparticipation. Finally, many questions are posed in an imprecise way. For example, the question “To what extent are significant parts of the population fundamentally excluded from society due to poverty and inequality?” does not capture patterns of participation but just socioeconomic exclusion. The two might be positively related, but they are totally different things. And in fact, this would not capture situations where the poor and the excluded actively participate, as is the case in some democracies. Moreover, the BTI links a culture of high social trust with the density of civil society (Bertelsmann Stiftung, 2014, p. 35). Again, these may indeed be positively related, but that is not necessarily so. Contexts of active participation in civil society can generate an anti-democratic political culture and generalized distrust of competing social categories (e.g.: ethnic conflict). It is also problematic to combine in the same question the existence of “veto powers and political enclaves”. The former can be normal democratic institutions like constitutional courts. The later could include separatism and regional-military bosses with the facto power and thus reflect a non-democratic situation. Finally, the extent to which “citizens, organizations and the mass media express opinions freely?” is not a dimension of participation as such, though it can, perhaps, be considered as a causal previous condition.
For us, Nay’s definition seems more interesting (2014), as it highlights, in addition to voting, political activism as one of the integrated forms of politicalparticipation. In the field of political science, voting is still recognized as the essential modality of politi- cal participation, which we can call “good participation”. However, in recent years new forms of participation have emerged which are materialized in social movements and organizations, through other practices such as strikes, boycotts, petitions and demon- strations to influence governments, which we can call “bad participation”. This tendency derives from the political exhaustion from the citizens and consequent disappointment with the vote as the only mechanism to participate politically, as Dahlgren (2003) points out. Thus, social networks and other forms of virtual communication are essential be- cause they allow the exchange of information with counterparts and with an uninformed population. According to Castells (2001, p. 9), “a network is a set of interconnected links – modes of organization with extraordinary benefits, because they are naturally flexible and adaptable, essential qualities for surviving and thriving in a changing environment”. More broadly, a social network can be a social structure of the internet, where elements are constituted by organizations or individuals, and whose links represent the estab- lished interactions (political, corporate, service, family, friendly, according to the interest and so on). The main function of each network is, above all, mass communication and the transmission of knowledge that will be examined with more detail in our research.
The information and communication technologies potentiate, from the Internet, a space to the discussion and political deliberation, approaching citizens and governments through interactive resources such as e-mails, forums, on-line ombudsman, chats and others. It is observed this way, the growing effort and investment of the governments and political representatives in organizing, managing, available information of public interest at the web, constituting the electronic government. Thus, the goal of this article intends to investigate the conditions of politicalparticipation of the citizens from the interactive tools available in the websites of the members from the state of Bahia. With a descriptive character, this research searched to identify only the sites of the members registered in Legislative Assembly from the state of Bahia (ALBA). In the tabulation of data, it was adapted the fourth level of the form: Level of participation of the citizens: the Evaluation School – proposed by Marques (2007) to a sheet in the software Excel and, to the discussion of them, used the analysis quali-quantitative. The results of this research show the incipient state of the website of the members from the state of Bahia to the opportunities of politicalparticipation in the web, lying to the principles which govern the electronic government. This work presents part of the studies which will help the project of research in developed by the present author in the Program of Pos Graduation in Information Science of the Universidade Federal da Bahia (PPGCI/UFBA).
TGS spaces can transform the process of formation, elaboration, decision-making, implementation and evaluation of public policy by the presence and intervention of new participants, such as the e-migrants. These social actors incorporate other forms of re- lationship – outside the traditional mechanisms of politicalparticipation — and utilise diverse resources that act as catalysts and influence the process of participation and interchange. As Subirats (2013, p. 69) writes: we are in the presence of “moments of col- lective aggregation on the web” without stable and defined interlocutors. The strength of these ‘actors’ does not reside in the number of people they represent but rather in their capacity to interconnect and to set the public agenda by the pressure exerted by the pub- lic within and without virtual space. Hence, the challenge will be understanding in what way the TGS spaces, which are made up by the e-migrants, can affect the intermediation and interaction of political institutions with the public and the depth of the changes they could generate in the different roles and forms of relating.
In the present context, the term ‘youth politicalparticipation’ refers to the involvement of young people in policy decision-making and various forms of activism, the latter being the associative expression of the will to enact social change. Politicalparticipation among young people, and older age groups, is an issue that has attracted considerable academic and policy attention over a relatively long period of time. An often cited defi nition is “those activities by private citizens that are more or less directly aimed at infl uencing the selection of government personnel and/or their actions,” as off ered by Verba & Norman (1972, p. 2). In regard to contemporary perspectives, this extends to work on cause-based activism and social movement mobilisation; issues that have all attractived a massive amount of academic attention (e.g., Loader, 2007; Bakker & de Vrees, 2011; Castells, 2012; della Porta & Mattoni, 2014). The existence of this work means that at a general level, we have some basic ideas that purport to explain why certain people mobilise, including global shifts in economics and politics that have aff ected youth, centring on the emergence of digital platforms, a theme explored in a number of the articles in this special issue.
Yes, we do, but before going down that road, it is essential to centre the debate on two previous issues. Firstly, we need to focus the debate on a more transversal issue: politicalparticipation. Secondly, we need to centre the research primarily on the challenges to autonomy instead of those regarding privacy. It is the reduction of autonomy that can contribute to the conditioning of even more public actions as well as choices of the citizens (namely in the spheres of education, work and health), but can also lead to a totalitarian society. So, it is important to put the following question: do “transparent” citizens have autonomy to participate in the political life of their cities, regions, countries or even at a global level?
For Ramón Esono Ebalé, Josimar Oyono Eseng and Moises Nvumba, it is the dictatorship that undermines the social relations, that promotes divisions, that obscures ways of living, promoting sexual harassment, torture at police stations, a lack of education, healthcare and the provision of basic needs (food, drinking water, housing). The dictatorship is linked to the appropriation of the country (its resources and peoples) by Obiang Nguema’s family and also to the absence of social and politicalparticipation and any recognition of the people. These themes are those that are most often addressed in the blogs. The lives of the elites contrast with the lack of basic social infrastructures and with the destruction of the people’s houses and agricultural lands when they are located in sites considered strategic for buildings such as hotels or private houses for members of the regime. Despite evoking the discourse of modernization, claims by the Regime that the State promotes key areas such as basic social infrastructures are unfounded. 128
Ghana, like many African countries has had its share of political instabilities in the aftermath of independence, in the late 1960s, 1970s and 1980s. But since the return to constitutional rule in 1992, Ghana has been noted as one of the stable countries within the sub- region and therefore a beacon of democracy for other African countries to emulate. This Political stability according to Svanikier, is due to the quality if its elites i.e. the highly educated lower and upper middle classes of the society, who seem to understand or have understood the need to maintain the status quo. The recent growth of the Ghanaian economy since 2011 (the highest 14% in 2011), made it one of the fastest growing economy in the sub-region. This growth has, however, in the past two years attracted more foreign investors and also attracted the return of highly qualified Ghanaians from the diaspora back to the country. The current economic boom has benefited some social classes and created new social categories, among those are the returned Ghanaians from the diaspora
Braz. J. of Develop., Curitiba, v. 6, n. 8, p. 57724-57741 aug. 2020. ISSN 2525-8761 Maranhense Coast. To carry out this study, the methodological procedures used were the application of the field diary (DC), the sociodemographic inventory (ISD) and the semi-structured interview (ESE), using fictitious names. Interventions in the community were carried out through workshops and lectures, activities that articulated quantitative data. There was a strong participation of women in work, in rural and women's associations, as well as in rural social movements. Identify ways of empowering these women within communities and the economic and political contribution to the development of them and the community.
The study of online campaigning occupies a small but increasingly important area of study for political science. Sitting at the intersection of the political communication, election campaigning and party change literatures it raises some new and provocative questions about whether modern-day electionee- ring is becoming a more participatory and grass-roots affair, and whether use of digital tools can actually affect the outcome of a race. In this short overview we aim to profile some of the key debates and findings that have emerged in relation to these and other questions posed in the literature. Specifically, we break our review down into three core areas: those studies that have focu- sed on the “what” or contents of online campaigns; those that have examined the question of “why” in terms of explaining the adoption of the new digital tools; and finally those that examined the “so what” question, looking at vo- ter effects. To a degree these focuses have also proceeded in a chronological fashion. Starting in the latter part of the 1990s, scholars in the US and UK began with a close examination of campaign websites in national elections, identifying a range of core functions that parties were transferring into cy- berspace and comparing them on the performance of these functions. Soon afterwards, research expanded to focus on more causal questions of uptake and impact, shifting the lens down to online campaigning at the local level. Who was using the new digital tools, and more importantly perhaps, were they gaining any electoral benefits from doing so? Below we review these three areas of academic study and profile their key conclusions. Finally, we articulate some considerations for future studies of Internet campaigning to take into account.
We estimate our model using ordinary least squares, controlling for individual and geographical effects. Nevertheless, we cannot exclude a self-selection bias if a respondent’s migration decision is correlated with his political attitudes. If this were the case, then our explanatory variables would be correlated with the error term due to a simultaneity problem and our results will suffer from endogeneity. As the migration experience (the ‘migration treatment’) is not randomly assigned to survey respondents, we thus could not determine the direction of causality between migration and political attitudes. We address this potential endogeneity bias by using instrumental variables that exploit ‘quasi-natural experiments’ given by natural catastrophes.
Dans cet article, on contrôle de façon empirique, tout en utilisant un large échantillon de pays, les différentes théories sur dissension et protestation au coeur des régimes autoritaires, où ces activités sont souvent traquées et forcément périlleuses. Les résultats empiriques de l’analyse comparative longitudinale confirment les prévisions de l’approche économique rationnelle à propos de la protestation politique, ainsi que le pouvoir d’explication des facteurs structuraux, de la théorie de la privation relative, des processus de diffusion politique au niveau des régions, le rôle des institutions dictatoriales et, en partie, la théorie de la mobilisation des ressources. On voit aussi que la participation non violente est l’un des principaux déterminants des émeutes et que la protestation précédente détermine de façon décisive la protestation actuelle, quelle qu’elle soit.
However, despite some democratic advances in decentralization and participation processes, whereby some local governments elected by pro- gressive parties tried to construct new and more democratic forms of ur- ban governance, Brazil was under certain constraints that hit several de- veloping countries since the 1990s. Those constraints are partly due to the globalization process and neoliberal ideology leading municipalities to adopt types of strategic planning aiming primarily at integrating local areas into a globalized economy, and consequently, jeopardizing that nascent democratic character of urban planning. In addition, several evaluations identifi ed that popular participation through deliberative or consultative councils created within that ‘new’ urban planning was far from constitut- ing an actual process of social control becoming in many cases, just an instrument to legitimate governmental authoritarian decisions.
In Zéphyr (2008) and Salinas and Booth (2011), the objective is also in the relationship between experience with corruption and democratic legitimacy, but the analysis is broader as it includes citizens from a larger number of countries. The authors use data from the 2006-07 and 2008 rounds, respectively, of the AB. Zéphyr (2008) uses two measures of democratic legitimacy and, in both cases, the results show that higher levels of experience with corruption are linked to lower levels of democratic legitimacy. Salinas and Booth (2001) use a wide range of explanatory variables, among them, the experience with situations of requests for bribe, and the perception of corrupt behavior among public servants to explain particular democratic attitudes, namely (01) expressed preference for democracy, (02) the support for basic democratic participation rights, and (03) the tolerance toward contestatory forms of politicalparticipation. The authors identify distinct relationships between the two variables for corruption with all three variables being explained: experience with corruption shows, in all cases, a negative association with democratic attitudes; on the other hand, the perception of corruption shows a positive association with democratic attitudes.
Conversely, other scholars have found digital media to be culpable agents of citizens’ frag- mentation that hinders collective action. For example, Bennett (2012) claims that digital media technology allows for social fragmentation and personalisation of politics, thus declining group loyalties and reinforcing extreme commitment to issues concerning personal lifestyle at the ex- pense of community consensus among the youth. In a study of three types of Facebook users’ civic engagement, defined by members of political parties, members of interest organisations, and non-members, Gustafsson (2012) found that non-members remain politically passive, even when they are exposed to political content. He concludes that using Internet and Facebook does not drive previously inactive respondents to politicalparticipation. Overall, there is no finality on the democratising potential or the otherwise of the new media. Hence, continuing exploration of the issue in different contexts and locales will crystallise the grey matter the development has become.
Our data on the politicalparticipation of college students in the public sphere is based on a survey built around three dimensions: 1) the life context (personal, social, cultural and technical resources available to the individual); 2) the media and Internet practices to achieve different goals in three different spheres of life (personal, academic/ professional and public); 3) the personal meanings attributed by students to their own practices. The personal sphere includes practices in the private domain such as health matters, affective needs and relationships with friends. The professional sphere refers to academic training as well as work related uses of Internet. The public sphere concerns the individual’s participation in cultural and political life at the local, national and in- ternational levels. The survey questions related to the public sphere explore how young adults use media and the Internet to stay abreast of political events, to get involved in political issues and to communicate with others about these issues. Our survey also explores the evaluative dimension of the Internet from the students’ point of view. For instance, we asked them to what extent they value the Internet as a means to be better informed and more easily involved in the public spheres and explored their views on the democratic potential of Internet for society. In this article, we will concentrate solely on practices related to the public sphere while taking advantage of our tri-dimensional model. Indeed, we will take into account correlations between, on the one hand, these practices and variables from the life context such as gender and culture, and on the other, between these practices and the personal meanings ascribed to them by the respondents. In other words, this paper presents specific data collected to better apprehend politicalparticipation but does not draw on the entire survey, the latter covering a wide range of Internet and media practices.