Online political campaigning

Lessons for the 2009 European Parliament elections


The internet is changing politics as we know it, fostering new styles of election campaigning. 

Political institutions, parties, politicians and civil society increasingly adapt to the internet era and use online tools to reach and connect with constituents and to engage in political debate. Web 2.0 has opened up new channels of communication and information. From viral video debate snippets shared across video platforms to energising Europe's young voters through growing social networks, campaign management online may prove to be a vital factor in determining the winners of elections.

The European elections of 2009 may see a 2.0 version of "power to the people" as citizens push their interests publicly, engage new voters and hold interactive debates on the open internet that may help create a truly pan-European audience. How will Europe's politicians capitalise on the experience from recent national elections and the US presidential campaign about the changing nature of political campaigns? What is the potential for the net-based interactive strategies to make a boost in European voter turnout?

The European Internet Foundation was proud to host this interesting debate with European experts in the field of online campaigning.

Programme - 14/10/2008

Chair Alexander Alvaro, MEP, EIF Member

François de la Brosse

In charge of President Nicolas Sarkozy's website and video channel. As head of the communication agency ZNZ Groupe, he also played a leading role in his presidential campaign.

Paddy Cosgrave

Founded and organised the highly successful online grassroots campaign "Rock the Vote" and in 2007, with the mission to educate and mobilise young people for the Irish General Election. He currently plans to run a similar campaign for the European Parliament elections.

Mercedes Bunz

Chief Editor at German daily, and has followed the development of online politics on both sides of the Atlantic.

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