The big data in policy

by Marc-Angelo

Ask a political scientist how political decision making happens and he will show you his models. Ask a journalist and he might point you to some backroom door. Ask a public affairs professional and he will explain you that everything was easier before the Lisbon treaty. 

When you take a step back though, all you see are many thoughts and emotions, all documented in official documents or channels like social media.
Not so long ago, you needed to physically collect policy developments in paper at the respective institutions. Now, every institution releases these digitally. All together this gives you a lot of data. More data then you can process. 

When I first asked myself how I can turn “a lot of data” in smart data, I was overwhelmed by the potential I realized big data could bring to understanding politics. It became clear that from now on, we needed to look at policies and politics differently, being able to compare ongoing debates with related debates in the past. Being able to identify real thought leaders and not just the most vocal policy makers. Being able to identify trends and historical “domino effects”.
Most importantly though, having access to all documents in just one place and overcoming any language barrier. 

This is when we at RPP and started working on 

We put a central dogma at every stage of development: concentrating huge amounts of data in smart dashboards, yet also giving the user the opportunity to follow a topic in depth. is and will always be work in progress. Based on user feedback, we will update and develop new features, add sources, train our AI and continue to democratize policy understanding.

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