Brexit Geomedia Project

Social Understandings of Scale: The Role of Print and Social Media in the EU Referendum Debate

Based on a study of newspaper stories, readers’ attitudes and Twitter activity during the EU Referendum of 2016, this project addresses the roles that print and social media play in shaping social understandings of multi-level governance and the politics of scale, with a particular emphasis on what voters know and understand of how membership in supra-national units shapes the prosperity of local areas. This project brings together expertise in regional political economy and the politics of scale; journalism and media studies; and computational linguistics and web semantics. The project is funded by the British Academy. You can find out more here.

The work involves three main datasources. Firstly, a collection of Brexit-related tweets from the run-up to the referendum has been gathered, and users' vote intentions and locations have been ascertained where possible. Secondly, a large number of newspaper articles mentioning Brexit and published in the same period have been gathered. Thirdly, survey data has also been studied.

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Principal Investigator: Dr Juan Miguel Kanai, Lecturer in Human Geography, University of Sheffield

Co-Applicants: Professor Jackie Harrison, Joint Head of Department of Journalism Studies, University of Sheffield; Professor Dimitris Ballas, Professor of Economic Geography, University of Groningen; Dr Diana Maynard, Research Fellow, University of Sheffield

Researchers: Dr Mehmet E. Bakir, Dr Genevieve Gorrell, Dr Luke Temple