Affective Effect: Issue Engagement on a Youth E-Participation Platform
Keywords:E-participation, emotions, ICT, public administration, policymaking
While E-participation promotes citizen participation in democratic decision-making processes, and often takes place through deliberation, citizens are expected to be cool-headed individuals equipped with reason and logic, insulating their actions from the impulse of emotion. However, research in neuroscience and cognitive science has found that emotion plays a vital part in cognitive processing and is instrumental in decision-making. This study thus fills this research gap by examining the effect of emotions in eliciting participation on a youth E-participation platform. Following affective intelligence theory and appraisal theory, the authors specifically examined three types of emotions; namely, anger, anxiety, and sadness. By applying methods in the field of text and statistical analysis, the authors found that anxiety, although the least common type of emotion expressed on the E-participation platform, was associated with an increased level of engagement. On the contrary, anger dominated issue discussion across topics, and sadness prevailed in the discourse on system-level economic issues.
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JeDEM is a peer-reviewed, open-access journal (ISSN: 2075-9517). All journal content, except where otherwise noted, is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Austria (CC BY 3.0) License.