Seminar at Koç University by Deniz Selman

Koç University, College of Social Sciences and Humanities Seminar Series presents:

Deniz Selman, Assistant Professor (Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania)
Boğaziçi University, Department of Economics

Title: “Political Knowledge and Voting Behavior”

Abstract: Political knowledge is an important factor in understanding voting behavior, particularly when voters’ policy positions conflict with those of their favored candidate. In this paper, we use the National Annenberg Election Survey (NAES) for the 2004 U.S. election to directly estimate voters’ ideological positions, candidates’ ideological positions, and voters’ knowledge of candidates’ ideological positions. We then analyze the relationship between these estimates and the individual’s vote in the 2004 presidential election. The NAES asks voters for their own stances and for the candidates’ stances on specific policy issues. Because candidates’ stances on these policies are known, the data allow us to (1) estimate voters’ knowledge levels using item response theory, and (2) simultaneously estimate the positions of voters and candidates on the same spectrum. Typically, in the empirical literature, individuals’ ideological positions are taken from self-reported placement on an ideological spectrum. Here, we use Poole and Rosenthal’s (1985, 2000) spatial model to estimate ideological positions, treating individuals’ opinions as Poole and Rosenthal treat roll-call data for legislators. This method recovers the underlying ideological space while avoiding the perception issues associated with self-placement. Assuming that voters prefer to vote for the candidate whose ideological position is closer to their own, we find that more knowledgeable individuals are far less likely to vote for the candidate farther from them. Moreover, significantly more voters vote “mistakenly” for Bush than for Kerry. Though a majority of voters have ideological positions closer to Kerry, Bush receives more votes due to this pattern of mistakes.

Location: Koç University, Main Campus SOS Z 21
Time: December 15, 2010. 16:45

Koç University: Now Admitting Students to Media and Visual Arts Department

Starting this autumn (2010), Koç University in Istanbul, Turkey will be admitting students to the Media and Visual Arts undergraduate program.

The Media and Visual Arts undergraduate program at Koç University, which integrates aesthetic, creative, and critical thought with expertise in advanced electronic multimedia, will provide students with the vital interdisciplinary education necessary for leadership in a rapidly transforming information society. The program will accept students with TS-1 score from the Turkish central placement examination LYS.

Each year, the program will admit 25 students, 5 with full tuition waiver, 5 with 50% tuition waiver.

For more information in Turkish, please consult the Media and Visual Arts homepage (the page in English is being prepared).

Edited Book: Reel Politics

I am happy to announce that our (Lemi Baruh and Ji Hoon Park) new edited volume on reality television, published by Cambridge Scholars Publishing, is now available.

Reel Politics: Reality Television as a Platform for Political Discourse
Editors: Lemi Baruh and Ji Hoon Park
Date Of Publication: Apr 2010
Isbn13: 978-1-4438-1915-2

I would like to thank all the contributors for all their brilliant work that made this book possible.

For a preview, the PDF of the Table of Contents and Intro chapters are available for download.

Thinking about getting a copy?  Click here or here

“This book delivers even more than it promises. In accomplishing its mission—to analyze the international eruption of Reality TV and to debate its pros and cons—this book confronts fundamental questions of media research. It asks, for example, how television genres evolve; whether their content relates to the zeitgeist; what gratifications they provide; whether they contribute to (or undermine) deliberative democracy; and how they cause new and old media to ‘converge.’”

—Professor Elihu Katz, Annenberg School for Communication, University of Pennsylvania

Societies Under Siege E-Proceeding is Out

After some delay, the e-proceedings of the Societies Under Siege: Media, Government, Politics, and Citizens’ Freedoms in an Age of Terrorism is available for download.

The e-proceeding presents a selection of short papers presented during the international conference organized at Kadir Has University in 2009.

Societies Under Siege (e-Proceeding)

Societies Under Siege Conference – Presentation

About two weeks ago, an international conference entitled Societies Under Siege: Media, Government, Politics and Citizens’ Freedoms in an Age of Terrorism was organized by the Faculty of Communications at Kadir Has University (organization committee chair was Dr. Banu Baybars Hawks).

I also had a chance to present a paper and  revisit some of my previous work on journalism, framing and surveillance in contemporary societies.

Here’s the link to the presentation…