Political methods in Glasgow (Sept. 2014)
We will host a two-panel section on New/big data at the Glasgow Conference: “Swept by the Flow? The Challenge of New Data Sources”
Abstract: In the last 10-15 years, political data have passed from rarity to abundance. Innovations have been made in the way data are created, collected, stored, accessed, and deciphered. Are the new data new or just more of the same? If they are new, do we need new methods to deal with them, or can we just step on old ones?
All fields are concerned by new data flows: political behaviour, discourse and political ideologies, public policy, comparative politics, political psychology and ethnography, etc. In each field, new data flows turned some questions from theoretical to empirical. Some phenomena are now more densely documented or can be triangulated from several sources.
The section assumes that scholars from different fields and traditions will benefit from sharing thoughts about similar changes in data availability. The growing division between political science sub-disciplines limits transversal connections and causes duplicate methodological advances.