PCL: Political Communication Lab, Stanford University
PCL: Political Communication Lab, Stanford University

Political Communication Lab

The Political Communication Lab is a research group that includes faculty and graduate students from Stanford University's Communication and Political Science departments who work on large-scale content analysis of news and elite rhetoric, experimental studies of political polarization, and cross-national investigations — spanning more than fourteen countries — of public opposition to immigration.

— PCL News and Highlights —

Research Objectives

The lab was formed to develop and administer experimental studies of public opinion and political behavior through the use of both online and traditional methods. The advantages of online experimentation are clear in light of the explosion in the number of households with access to the Internet. Moreover, issues of sampling bias -- previously endemic to experiments -- can be overcome through the greater "reach" of online experiments and by the application of standard probability sampling techniques to the recruitment of online experimental participants. These developments significantly alleviate concerns over the generalizability of experimental research and as a result, experiments now represent a dominant methodology for political communication researchers.