By Casey Klofstad
Does speaking approximately civic matters motivate civic participation? In his cutting edge e-book, Civic speak, Casey Klofstad indicates that our discussions approximately politics and present occasions with our buddies, colleagues, and relatives—"civic talk"—has the power to show notion into action—from balloting to volunteering in civic organizations.
Klofstad’s direction breaking examine is the 1st to discover proof of a causal courting among the informal chatting and civic participation. He employs survey info and concentration teams which include randomly assigned university freshman roommates to teach this habit in motion. Klofstad additionally illustrates how civic speak varies lower than diversified situations and the way the results can final years into the long run. in accordance with those findings, Klofstad contends that social context performs a imperative position in preserving the energy of democracy. This end cuts opposed to the grain of prior learn, which essentially makes a speciality of individual-level determinants of civic participation, and negates social-level motives.
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Additional resources for Civic Talk: Peers, Politics, and the Future of Democracy
2007a, 2007b, 2007c). Under this procedure, the effect of engaging in civic talk is measured by comparing the civic participation habits of survey respondents who are similar to one another except that one engaged in civic talk and the other did not. 14 More detail on how this procedure was conducted is included in Appendix C. Additional Qualitative Evidence While survey data allow for systematic study of political phenomena, this form of inquiry is limited by the fact that numbers alone cannot give us a full picture of what actually occurs when peers discuss politics and current events.
My data show that civic talk is less frequent than other forms of discussion, but it is still pervasive. The data also show that civic talk typically occurs in response to, and with regard to, an election, what issues are being covered in the news, and other such current events. Most important, the C-SNIP data also show that discussing politics and current events has a positive effect on participation in a variety of civic activities. For example, C-SNIP Panel Survey respondents who engaged in civic talk were 38 percent more active in voluntary civic organizations and were 7 percentage points more likely to have voted in the 2004 presidential primary.
Social-Level Antecedents of Civic Participation Now that the independent and dependent variables of interest in this study have been defined, we need to ask what we already know about their relationship to each other. Admittedly, this is not a new research question. 6 In this same spirit, a number of different lines of contemporary social science research have addressed the effect that social-level factors have on various attitudes and behaviors. For example, works in sociology and social psychology show that individuals emulate the attitudinal and behavioral norms of their social network (Festinger et al.