Closing the Citizen-Government Communication Gap: Content, Audience, and Network Analysis of Government Tweets

Clayton Wukich, Ines Mergel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

26 Scopus citations

Abstract

A key task in emergency management is the timely dissemination of information to decision makers across different scales of operations, particularly to individual citizens. Incidents over the past decade highlight communication gaps between government and constituents that have led to suboptimal outcomes. Social media can provide valuable tools to reduce those gaps. This article contributes to the existing literature on social media use by empirically demonstrating how and to what extent state-level emergency management agencies employ social media to increase public participation and promote behavioral changes intended to reduce household and community risk. Research to this point has empirically examined only response and recovery phases related to this process. This article addresses each phase of emergency management through the analysis of Twitter messages posted over a 3-month period. Our research demonstrates that while most messages conformed to traditional one-to-many government communication tactics, a number of agencies employed interactive approaches including one-to-one and many-to-many strategies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)707-735
Number of pages29
JournalJournal of Homeland Security and Emergency Management
Volume12
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2015

Keywords

  • emergency management communication
  • social convergence
  • social network analysis
  • twitter

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business, Management and Accounting (miscellaneous)
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Safety Research

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