Information Technology and Politics

Newsletter of the Information Technology and Politics Section of the 
American Political Science Association:

Spring, 2000

In this issue...

Name Change

President's Column

REPORT: Guidelines on Electronic Scholarship, 

Nominations for PSRT-L Editorial Board

1999 APSA Papers On-line

1999 Software and Website Awards

About this Newsletter

Information Technology News

Section Officers

Previous issues:
Summer 1998 
W inter 1998 
Summer 1997 

Winter 1997 
Summer 1996
Archives (1992-1996)

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Name Change: The Section Formerly Known as Computers and Multimedia 

As a consequence of the Fall, 1999 section referendum (and the persistence of Jerry Goldman), the APSA Computers and Multimedia Section (before that,  the Computer User's Group) is now the section on Information Technology and Politics.  The name of this newsletter changes accordingly.  

President's Column

Michael C. Gizzi, Mesa State College 

As president of the NEW Information Technology and Politics Section of the APSA, it gives me great pleasure to provide an introductory column for this first newsletter of the year Y2K. (I almost called this the first newsletter of the new millennium, but Iíll wait on that until January 2001!). I very much appreciate past-president Gary Klassí willingness to take on the reigns of newsletter editor. I know we have had a bit of a hiatus from the newsletter after Bob Brookshire stepped down as editor in 1998, but the newsletter is back!

There has been a lot of change in the section this year, the most obvious of which is our name change. At the APSA Meetings in Atlanta, Section members recommended that the Computers and Multimedia Section consider a name change to better capture the essence of what the section does. Several members thought that "Computers and Multimedia" no longer was adequate. During the Fall Elections, section members voted by a large margin to change the name to Information Technology and Politics. Our new name will allow the section to continue to focus on issues involving technology in teaching and research, but it will also enable us to branch out to consider the broader implications of information technology in politics and society as a whole.

I am excited to begin my term as president of the section, and I encourage you to contact me if there are things you think the Section should be doing. One of the things that the section might consider is the possibility of participating in the Centennial Fund drive. Other sections have been very successful at raising funds to support a section endowment. The section council has only begun to discuss this option. If you have ideas about how we might put an Information Technology endowment to good use (a research fund? graduate student grants? funds to support technology innovations in political science?), or if you think you might be interested in helping to coordinate a fund drive, please let me know.

Other changes this year include the changing of the guard of our website. After maintaining the site for the past three years, I am pleased to turn over responsibilities to G. R. Boynton and Margaret Martin. Bob and Margaret will bring new vitality to the site in coming months.

Finally, I am pleased to welcome the three newest members of the section council: Bill Wilkerson, Lori Brainard, and Jonathan Wilkenfeld. We have a great council in place to provide leadership for coming years.

Report: Guidelines on Electronic Scholarship, Information Technology, and Computer Support

From: Steffen W Schmidt, Iowa State University <>

An ad hoc committee of the Section on Computers and Multimedia chaired by Steffen Schmidt, Iowa State University has drafted proposed "Guidelines on Electronic Scholarship, Information Technology, and Computer Support in Political Science". This report will be presented to the APSA Council for adoption by the association. The report has ten specific recommendations including statements regarding the need for hardware/software availability and technical support for political scientists, guidelines on assessing electronic scholarship for promotion, tenure and annual review of faculty, the protection of intellectual property rights, and suggestions for new initiatives at the association level to make political science a state-of-the-art digital discipline. Please review the report and send suggestions for further revision.

The report can be found at: (in Word format) (in PDF format)

Members of the report committee were:
Steffen Schmidt, University Professor of Political Science, Iowa State University (chair)
Barbara Salmore, Professor of Political Science, Drew University
Jonathan Wilkenfeld, Professor of Political Science, University of Maryland
William Wilkerson, Assistant Professor of Political Science, SUNY Oneonta
Kent E. Portney, Professor of Political Science, Tufts University
Michael Gizzi, Associate Professor of Political Science, Mesa State College

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Software and Web Awards Announced

The Computers and Multimedia Section makes up to four awards each year. The awards were presented at the Sectionís reception at the 1999 conference of the APSA in Atlanta on September 4. The following are the recipients of the awards.

Okidata Best Instructional Web Site Award:

Quantitative Research in Public Administration site:
GIS in Public Administration site:
Computer Applications in Public Administration site:
Introduction to American Government  
G. David Garson, North Carolina State University

Okidata Best Research Web Site Awards:

Record of American Democracy (ROAD)  
Micah Altman, Gary King, Bradley Palmquist, Greg Adams, Kenneth Benoit, Claudine Gay, Jeffrey B. Lewis, Russ Mayer, and Eric Reinhardt (Harvard University).
The Harvard-MIT Data Center Site:  
Micah Altman, Jeff Gill, Gary King, and William Wei

Okidata Best Instructional Software Award:

"The Supreme Courtís Greatest Hits
Jerry Goldman, Northwestern University

Okidata Best Research Software Award:

"Clarify: Software for Interpreting and Presenting Statistical Results" 
Michael Tomz, Jason Wittenberg, and Gary King, Harvard University

Our congratulations to all the award winners. Nominations are now being accepted for the Sectionís Millennium Awards. Nominations can be sent to Professor Michael Gizzi, Department of Political Science, Mesa State University, Grand Junction, CO, or to his e-mail address,

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1999 APSA Papers On-line

The Computers and Multimedia Division, chaired by Kent Portney, sponsored ten panels at the 1999 APSA meeting held in Atlanta, Georgia.  The following papers are available on-line through the Political Research Online (PROceedings) website. These papers will be available online until August, 2000. 

Rosalind Blanco Cook, Peter Ivan Armstrong, III  Point and Click: Should the Exercise of Democracy Go Online, And What Are the Implications? 
Erik P. Bucy, Kim Gregson  Opportunities for Interactivity and Citizenship on the World Wide Web 
Scott R. Furlong  On-Line Study Guides: Development and Evaluation
Michael C. Gizzi,  Designing, Developing, and Implementing Internet Courses: Trials and Tribulations of Teaching American Government on the Web
Dennis W. Gleiber, Stephen S. Meinhold  Sampling Political Attitudes Using the Internet 

Doris A. Graber, Brian C. White  The Many Faces of the News:From Mainstream Media to Cybermedia
Kim Gregson  Online Discussion Groups: The Potential for Participation 
Edward J. Harpham  Going On-Line: The 1998 Congressional Campaign 
Christopher B. Jones Web-Based Instruction as a Means for Outcomes in Political Science
Gary Klass, Lane Crothers  An Experimental Evaluation of Web-based Tutorial Quizzes 

Cecilia Manrique Directions in the International Setting in the Field of Information Technology 
Margolis, Michael  Using the Internet for Teaching and Research: A Political Evaluation 
Michael K. Moore, Adrianna Lancaster  Teaching and Learning in a Video-Rich Web-Based Distance Education Course: An Evaluation of What Students Use and How Students Learn 
Toshiyuki Nishikawwa  Issues and Policy Relating to Internet Education in Japan 
Pippa Norris Who Surfs Cafť Europa? Virtual Democracy in the U.S. and Western Europe 

Alan Rosenblatt  Lurking About in Hyde Park With the Disembody Politic 
Jeffrey D. Sadow, Karen James  Virtual Billboards? Candidate Web Sites and Campaigning in 1998. 
Christopher Weare, Juliet Musso, Matt Hale  The Political Economy of Electronic Democratic Forums: The Design of California Municipal Web Sites 

About this Newsletter. 

This, the first issue of the ITP newsletter, will be the last to be distributed to section members via postal mail.   All section members for whom we have accurate email addresses should have received an announcement from me pointing to the link for the on-line edition of the newsletter.  A printed copy of the next newsletter will be sent only to those members for whom the APSA does not have a current email address.  All others will receive an email announcement when the next newsletter is available.

If you did not receive that announcement, please e-mail  Gary Klass and I will add your address to our database.

This newsletter is available on-line at:

This newsletter will also be available through the new ITP website URL:

Nominations Sought for PSRT-L Editorial Board.

ITP is the sponsor of PSRT-L, the Political Science Research and Teaching List, and co-sponsor of the H-Teachpol, the political science teaching list.  Currently PSRT-L is seeking nominations (self-nominations are welcome) for membership on its editorial board. If you are interested email Gary Klass (

Information Technology News

Association for Computers and Social Science <>


ACM Digital Libraries Conference <>

Toward a More Responsible Two-Party System," the celebrated and controversial report of the American Political Science Association's Committee on Political Parties, issued a frontal assault on the suitability of American political parties for a modern, activist state.    APSA's Organized Section on Political Organizations and Parties, in conjunction with APSA, is coordinating a series of workshops, panels, and publications to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the report.    Workshops and panels at the 2000 APSA Annual Meeting in Washington, DC, will assess the report, its legacy, and the status of American parties at the turn of the century.    Visit for updates, conference paper drafts, downloads of the report and commentaries on the report, and other news related to the anniversary events.
John Coleman

The Social Science Computer Review is soliciting suggestions, nominations, and proposals for essays for the year 2000 on "The State of the Art of Computing in the Social Sciences, 1999." special issue. Essays address an important, broad theme of general interest relating computing to the author's social science or related discipline. Final manuscripts would be due in Summer, 2000. Address correspondence to the general or disciplinary editor as listed at: <>

For your possible interest, below is an excellent paper posted by G. David Garson, Department of Political Science and Public Administration, NCSU, on the topic of information technology and quality standards in higher education. The Role of Technology in Quality Education

Section Officers

Three new section officers we chosen by the membership in the section's annual election: Lori Brainard, Jonathan Wilkenfeld, and Bill Wilkerson



Newsletter Editor:

Web page editors

Michael Gizzi, Mesa State College (
Kent Portney, Tufts University (
Cecilia Manrique, University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse (

Robert Duval, West Virginia University (
Steve Frantzich, U.S. Naval Academy (
Mort Sipress, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire (
Robert Brookshire, James Madison University (
Micah Altman, Harvard University <>
Tracey Gladstone-Sovell  University of Wisconsin-River Falls <
Lori Brainard, George Washington University <>
Jonathan Wilkenfeld, University of  Maryland <>
Bill Wilkerson, SUNY Oneonta, <>

Gary Klass, Illinois State University (

G. R. Boynton <>
Margaret Martin <>

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