I am a Research Associate at the Institute for Communications Studies at the University of Leeds. As well as teaching web development to undergraduates on our New Media programme I am studying for a PhD which will investigate strategy, usage, content and integration of UK government e-participation initiatives. Current areas of interest include conversation mapping and argument visualization and the impact of interface design on the deliberative nature of user generated content.

This blog is written as a record of the process I go through during my research and as a record of the input I receive as well as major points of progress and learning. It is written largely as a resource for myself but will hopefully develop into an informative and interesting insight into online public conversation hosting and analysis.

Chris Birchall


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