Collective Action

Experiments to Investigate Online Collective Action and Leadership

Emergent Leadership Screenshot

These experiments explored the dynamics of collective action on-line and tested empirically how different information environments affect collective action decisions at various stages in a mobilization. Specifically, we wanted to examine the effect of different forms of real-time ‘social influence’ on people’s participatory decisions.

How many people does it take to change a petition?

This paper tests the hypothesis that social information provided by the internet makes it possible in large groups to exert social pressure that Olson considered viable only for smaller groups. In two experiments - laboratory and field - subjects could choose to sign petitions and donate money to support causes. Participants were randomised into treatment groups that received varying information about how many other people had participated and control groups receiving no social information.

Can the internet overcome the logic of collective action? An experiment of the impact of social pressure on political participation

This paper investigates the impact of the internet upon individual contributions to collective action. It examines how political participation may be stimulated by one particular characteristic of the internet: its ability to provide real-time feedback information on the participation of others in a political action.

Experiments for Web Science: Examining the Effect of the Internet on Collective Action

The shift of much of political life on to the Internet and WWW has implications for understanding of political behaviour, particularly people's willingness to undertake collective action and organise around public goods. Web-based experiments are an under-used methodology to identify and investigate these Internet effects.

The Cyber Party: The Causes and Consequences of Organisational Innovation in European Political Parties

by Professor Helen Margetts (UCL)

Paper to workshop ‘The Causes and Consequences of Organisational Innovation in European Political Parties’ at European Consortium of Political Research (ECPR) Joint Sessions of Workshops, Grenoble, 6-11 April 2001.

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