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Measuring policy diffusion with automated content analysis


Gilardi, Fabrizio; Giovanoli, Manuela; Shipan, Charles R; Wüest, Bruno (2014). Measuring policy diffusion with automated content analysis. In: Political context matters: content analysis in the social sciences, Mannheim, 10 October 2014 - 11 October 2014.

Abstract

Policy diffusion means that policy choices in one unit (such as states, cantons, and cities) are influenced by the policy choices of other units. This idea has been studied extensively in several social sciences and, within political science, in subfields such as international relations, American federalism, and public policy. While scholars have demonstrated convincingly that policy diffusion is a real and important phenomenon, much less is known about why and exactly how policies diffuse. We argue that this condition is due to the inherent limitations of existing research designs. This paper puts forward a new approach based on automated frame analysis. Theoretically, the paper focuses on how the perception of policy problems and solutions changes as a result of the adoption of policies elsewhere. We apply this approach to the spread of smoking bans among US states and Swiss cantons. Preliminary results from an analysis of thirteen American newspapers shows that media coverage intensifies when major legislation and illustrates how it prioritizes different consequences of smoking bans, such health, economic fallout for businesses, and enforcement issues.

Abstract

Policy diffusion means that policy choices in one unit (such as states, cantons, and cities) are influenced by the policy choices of other units. This idea has been studied extensively in several social sciences and, within political science, in subfields such as international relations, American federalism, and public policy. While scholars have demonstrated convincingly that policy diffusion is a real and important phenomenon, much less is known about why and exactly how policies diffuse. We argue that this condition is due to the inherent limitations of existing research designs. This paper puts forward a new approach based on automated frame analysis. Theoretically, the paper focuses on how the perception of policy problems and solutions changes as a result of the adoption of policies elsewhere. We apply this approach to the spread of smoking bans among US states and Swiss cantons. Preliminary results from an analysis of thirteen American newspapers shows that media coverage intensifies when major legislation and illustrates how it prioritizes different consequences of smoking bans, such health, economic fallout for businesses, and enforcement issues.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper), not_refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Political Science
Dewey Decimal Classification:320 Political science
Language:English
Event End Date:11 October 2014
Deposited On:21 Dec 2017 16:04
Last Modified:30 Mar 2018 06:16
Additional Information:auch: presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association, USA, Washington D.C
OA Status:Green

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