Expert Takes on Overseas Elections

A promising development for global news junkies: the group political science blog The Monkey Cage is seeking poli-sci posts on elections around the world. As Joshua Tucker puts it in the post announcing the initiative:

Here’s the motivation. Most of what most of us know originally know about elections tends to come from journalists. Political scientists are occasionally (or even often) quoted in articles, but usually we don’t enter the discussion on our own terms until months (or even years!) later when articles that include analysis of the election in question begin to appear, with the occasional Op Ed as the exception.

However, for most elections out there, there is some political scientist paying close attention to what is going on and/or some graduate student out in the field doing research. Our thought is to use the Monkey Cage to give this person a chance to share their thoughts more widely in the immediate aftermath of a given election.

None of the elections on tap this fall is likely to have the import, or news appeal for an American audience, of the votes already held in Iran and Afghanistan this year. Still, this effort bears watching. One of the great benefits of the growth of the political blogosphere has been to make expertise more readily accessible to journalists—not to supplant traditional journalism, but to supplement it, inform it, and at times challenge it. It’ll be interesting to see whether the posters featured in this series have their insights picked up in mainstream coverage.

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Greg Marx is an associate editor at CJR. Follow him on Twitter @gregamarx.