Writing for the Archive-It blog, Joshua Meyer-Gutbrod (University of South Carolina, Department of Political Science) describes the context and creation of the Digital Campaigns Project, a database of U.S. state legislative campaign websites from 2016-2022 that enables researchers to examine variation in state partisan agendas and rhetoric.
The project, initially begun in 2016, is led by Meyer-Gutbrod and co-created with undergraduate students from the University of South Carolina, with the goal of establishing a long-running data source on state campaign rhetoric by archiving campaign websites for state-level elected officials.
The blog post describes the process of finding local campaign websites and partnering with the Archive-It team to create a public repository of the website data. On the research potential of this database, Meyer-Gutbrod writes, “From a research perspective, both the text and image data stored through these archives provides a unique, expansive, and holistic look at state political rhetoric, which has historically been understudied due to the lack of availability of similar data.”
This post was produced through a cooperation between Tierney Gleason, kYmberly Keeton, Mimosa Shah, and Rebekah Walker (Editors-at-Large), Caitlin Christian-Lamb and Rachel Starry (Editors for the week), Claudia Berger, Nickoal Eichmann-Kalwara, Linsey Ford, Pamella Lach, and Hillary Richardson (dh+lib Review Editors), and John Russell (Editor in Chief).