Social media analytics for future oriented policy making

New paper by Verena Grubmüller, Katharina Götsch, and Bernhard Krieger: “Research indicates that evidence-based policy making is most successful when public administrators refer to diversified information portfolios. With the rising prominence of social media in the last decade, this paper argues that governments can benefit from integrating this publically available, user-generated data through the technique of social media analytics (SMA). There are already several initiatives set up to predict future policy issues, e.g. for the policy fields of crisis mitigation or migrant integration insights. The authors analyse these endeavours and their potential for providing more efficient and effective public policies. Furthermore, they scrutinise the challenges to governmental SMA usage in particular with regards to legal and ethical aspects. Reflecting the latter, this paper provides forward-looking recommendations on how these technologies can best be used for future policy making in a legally and ethically sound manner.”