2018 elections: Digital Democracy Room will monitor public debate on social media
Public Policy
19 July 2018

2018 elections: Digital Democracy Room will monitor public debate on social media

The initiative aims to monitor public debate and the impact of disinformation practices on social media during the 2018 elections.

On July 25, FGV’s Department of Public Policy Analysis (DAPP) will launch the “Digital Democracy Room – #observa2018”, in Rio de Janeiro, featuring a seminar on the impact of social media on elections in Brazil and around the world. The project aims to monitor and analyze public debate online and identify disinformation actions in this year’s upcoming elections.

The Room will provide public and accessible daily analyses on society’s perceptions of the public policy agenda and economic debate, as well as political process manipulation practices, such as the automated profiles (bots) and fake news. The analyses will be published on a daily basis and also in weekly consolidated reports, as well as possible policy papers with in-depth analyses and policy recommendations.

“in 2018, Brazil should face one of the most polarized elections since the re-democratization, which could have different consequences, such as worsening the current crisis or sparking major social changes and policies”, said Marco Aurelio Ruediger, DAPP Director. “All eyes around the world will turn to the upcoming elections and the role played by the internet and social media in Brazil. The possibility of effective action by civil society in combating misinformation, manipulation and illegitimate interference in digital media can have consequences in other democracies around the world, establishing Brazil as an international benchmark”.

Strategic Partnerships

The Digital Democracy Room will feature a hotsite – available in Portuguese and English – and the #observa2018 web application, which will provide daily data and analyses on cell phones. The Atlantic Council’s Digital Forensic Research Lab (DFRLab) and the National Democratic Institute (NDI), both think tanks based in Washington (USA); the Omidyar Network; Visualization and Data Analytics Research Center (VIDA) of New York University (NYU); Institute of Technology and Equality (IT&E) and FGV’s São Paulo Law School (Direito SP) are all partners in DAPP’s project.

The Room also has a media partnership with CBN radio, newspaper Estado de Sao Paulo, fact-checking agency Lupa, and digital portal Nexo Jornal. In addition, an Observer Committee, formed by an international network of academic, civil society and government partners, will maintain a permanent dialog with DAPP researchers in the Room to share experiences during the election period.

In line with FGV’s institutional mission, the studies, analyses and publications created by DAPP in the Digital Democracy Room – #observa2018 do not have any political or partisan bias.

Click here to register for the seminar.