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Mapping polylogical discourse to understand (dis)information negotiation: the case of the UK Events Research Programme

Musi, E., O’Halloran, K., Carmi, E. ORCID: 0000-0003-1108-2075 , Humann, M., Jin, M., Yates, S. & Pal, G. (2023). Mapping polylogical discourse to understand (dis)information negotiation: the case of the UK Events Research Programme. In: Maci, S., Demata, M., Seargeant, P. & McGlashan, M. (Eds.), The Routledge Book of Discourse and Disinformation. (pp. 412-425). Abingdon, UK: Routledge.


The advent of the Networked Society has revolutionised the way public discourse is shaped and negotiated leading to increased access to both information and (dis)-(mis)information. With the goal of investigating the discursive roots of disinformation in crisis scenarios, we propose a scalable methodology to analyse polylogues where stakeholders (e.g. citizens, journalists, politicians) advance various positions (news claims) across multiple venues (e.g. social media, broadcast media, discussion fora). We apply this framework to the analysis of discourse(s) around the Events Research Programme (ERP) in the United Kingdom aimed at gathering evidence on the reopening of events and venues assessing the risk of SARS-CoV-2 transmission. Through the combination of qualitative (content analysis of survey results) and quantitative methods (topic modelling and sentiment analysis), we compare and contrast discourse(s) around the pilot live events from different stakeholders (UK government, official national and local media, social media users and aspiring participants at the large events) across media outlets (official website, news media outlets, Twitter and questionnaire). Drawing from attested mismatches we provide three main recommendations on how to craft effective public messages in crisis scenarios.

Publication Type: Book Section
Additional Information: This is an Accepted Manuscript of a book chapter published by Routledge in The Routledge Handbook of Discourse and Disinformation on 30 Nov 2023, available online:
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Z Bibliography. Library Science. Information Resources > ZA Information resources
Departments: School of Policy & Global Affairs > Sociology & Criminology
[thumbnail of Mapping polylogical discourse to understand dis information negotiation - the case of the UK Events Research Programme.pdf] Text - Accepted Version
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