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Interpreting Hashtag Politics Hardcover – 30 Apr 2014


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan (30 April 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1137357738
  • ISBN-13: 978-1137357731
  • Product Dimensions: 14.5 x 1.8 x 21.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,661,056 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Review

"To understand the dynamics of policy making, take social media seriously. Nice work by Stephen Jeffares illustrating how a new generation of policy scholars will redraw the boundaries of a discipline. - Professor Maarten Hajer, Department of Political Science, University of Amsterdam and PBL Netherlands Environmental Agency, the Netherlands. "Interpreting Hashtag Politics is topical, lively and very well written. It fully engages the reader and raises important issues in the study of public policy " - Peter John, School of Public Policy, University College London, UK Jeffares' book fills a huge void in social science theory and research in a digital era. He thoughtfully draws from policy and political science theory, to construct a conceptual framework for understanding, researching, and interpreting the deluge of social media posts that discuss or aim to change public policy. - Sherry Emery, Institute for Health Research and Policy, University of Illinois at Chicago, USA "Interpreting Hashtag politics fills a really important gap in the literature and is comprehensive in the way that it pulls together a range of different ideas and synthesises them in an accessible and relevant way" - Helen Dickinson, Melbourne School of Government, University of Melbourne, Australia

About the Author

Stephen Jeffares is a lecturer at INLOGOV, School of Government and Society, University of Birmingham UK. He is co-author of Hybrid Governance with Chris Skelcher and Helen Sullivan. His work draws on text analytics and Q methodology to understand changing debates surrounding public policy and public services.

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Format: Kindle Edition
Clamour around the impact of social media in the policy space grows, but oscillates between enthusiasts and skeptics.
Jeffares' book takes a distinctive approach: it tries to take a deep breath and assess at what stage our theoretical understanding of digitally-enabled policy ideas is, while also contributing to theory development; and it instructs on how to analyse and measure the effects of social media on the policy idea cycle. It does so with agile prose, which conveys messages clearly and in an-easy-to-apply way. And when theory could get complicated, Jeffares sheds light on potential doubts with detailed case studies. Critically, Jeffares demonstrates academic rigour in exploring both sides of the argument (digital enthusiasts and skeptics), and pointing to the limits of existing measures of impact.

I personally benefited from this mix of theoretical clarity and practical orientation in framing a report on the impact of digital media on social movement building. I recommend Jeffares' book to anyone interested in acquiring the tools to critically navigate the increasingly socially-networked space of policy ideas, both theoretically and practically.
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Format: Hardcover
This book considers how policy ideas ‘live and die’ in today's 'digital age', shedding a very current light on policy analysis in the age of social media. The book has a real energy in how it is written, which makes it an enjoyable and fascinating read. I think it is because it doesn’t just provide a textbook commentary on policy analysis in the age of social media. It does do this, and does it very well (evolving the conception of policy analysis into the digital age), but the author uses case studies and original research within the book to illustrate how policy discussions can be captured and analysed (e.g. Big Society, Total Place, PCC elections and Bedroom Tax). This is where it gets really interesting. The chapters on the #PCC election provide a detailed insight into how he coded and analysed 1000s tweets, to identify opinion, and how they were then interpreted. He also discusses and then tackles the challenges faced with interpreting the tweets: to quote Stephen Jeffares ‘how to separate the signal from the noise’.

All in all a really engaging read and a definite 'must have' for anyone interested in policy analysis.
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