Michael  Parkin Author of Evaluating Organization Development

Michael Parkin

Associate Professor of Politics
Oberlin College

Michael Parkin is Associate Professor of Politics at Oberlin College in Oberlin, OH. His primary research explores the political use of new media and questions of political behavior more broadly. His work has appeared in The American Political Science Review, The Journal of Politics, Political Communication, Political Research Quarterly and other venues. He is also the author of Talk Show Campaigns: Presidential Candidates on Daytime and Late Night Television.


    Ph.D., University of Minnesota, 2006

Areas of Research / Professional Expertise

    Political use of new media; campaign communications; political participation

Personal Interests

    Sports, cooking and travel


Featured Title
 Featured Title - Talk Show Campaigns Presidential Candidates (Parkin) - 1st Edition book cover


Journal of Politics

The Impact of Media Bias

Published: Apr 22, 2015 by Journal of Politics
Authors: James N. Druckman and Michael Parkin
Subjects: Communication Studies

We investigate how editorial slant shapes candidate evaluations and vote choice. We avoid methodological pitfalls by focusing on a single Senate campaign in a single market with two competing, editorially distinct newspapers. Combining content analyses of the papers with an exit poll, we find compelling evidence that editorial slant influences voters’ decisions. Our results raise serious questions about the media's place in democratic processes.

Hispanic Journal of Behavioral Sciences

The Voting Rights Act and Latino Voter Registration

Published: Feb 01, 2014 by Hispanic Journal of Behavioral Sciences
Authors: Michael Parkin and Frances Zlotnick

This study explores how the language minority provisions in the Voting Rights Act (VRA) affect Latino voter registration. We are particularly interested in how these provisions affect Latino citizens with varying levels of English language proficiency. Our results suggest that the positive effects of VRA coverage on Latino registration are due to a symbolic “welcoming” effect, rather than substantial reductions in administrative barriers to registration.

Journal of Elections, Public Opinion and Parties

U.S. Congressional Campaign Communications in an Internet Age

Published: Jan 01, 2014 by Journal of Elections, Public Opinion and Parties
Authors: James N. Druckman, Martin Kifer and Michael Parkin

Have website technologies altered how congressional candidates campaign? We find that candidates use these technologies to a much lesser extent than one may suspect, and that their scant usage is driven by how certain technologies limit control of the candidate's message, the candidate's status in the race and other key variables such as the employment of campaign consultants.

Journal of Political Marketing

The Impact of Multimedia Technology on Candidate Website Visitors

Published: Aug 01, 2012 by Journal of Political Marketing
Authors: Michael Parkin
Subjects: Communication Studies

This article investigates how multimedia (i.e., audio and/or video) influences the evaluations and vote intentions of candidate website visitors. Results show that using multimedia had a modest net benefit resulting from conditional reactions based on participants’ party identification and political interest—the candidate's partisan supporters reacted positively while non-supporters, particularly those with limited political interest, were less impressed.

Politics & Policy

English Proficiency and Latino Political Participation in U.S. Elections

Published: Aug 01, 2011 by Politics & Policy
Authors: Michael Parkin and Frances Zlotnick

This article focuses on how English proficiency affects Latino participation in U.S. elections, and evaluates the extent to which this language barrier might be overcome by living in a community with a large Latino population and having access to registration materials and ballots in Spanish. We find that the inability to speak and read English hinders registration and turnout among Latino citizens, and that these barriers can be difficult to overcome.

Political Research Quarterly

Taking Late Night Comedy Seriously

Published: Mar 01, 2010 by Political Research Quarterly
Authors: Michael Parkin

Many assume that candidate appearances on late night talk shows leave viewers uninformed and focused on the candidate’s personal image. In this article, I show that—contrary to popular expectations—late night interviews have particular features that can, at times, engage otherwise politically disinterested viewers, causing them to process and recall substantive policy information.

Political Communication

Timeless Strategy Meets New Medium

Published: Feb 01, 2010 by Political Communication
Authors: James N. Druckman, Martin Kifer and Michael Parkin

This study shows that candidates go negative with similar likelihoods across televised and online media. We also find that while similar dynamics drive negativity on the Web and in television advertising, there are some notable differences, which stem from truncated data on TV ads.

Social Science Computer Review

Issue Engagement on Congressional Candidate Websites

Published: Feb 01, 2010 by Social Science Computer Review
Authors: James N. Druckman, Cari Lynn Hennessy, Martin Kifer and Michael Parkin

We study issue engagement with data from congressional candidate Web sites, that are unmediated and representative of both House and Senate campaigns. We find that the saliency of issues in public opinion is a primary determinant of candidate engagement. And, despite the Internet's capacity to allow candidates to explain their positions on numerous issues, candidates continue to behave strategically, selecting a few issues on which to engage their adversaries.

American Political Science Review

Campaign Communications in U.S. Congressional Elections

Published: Aug 01, 2009 by American Political Science Review

This paper advances research on congressional campaigns by integrating and extending extant theories of campaign communication. We test our predictions with a novel dataset based on candidate Web sites. We find that incumbents and challengers differ across a broad range of behavior that reflects varying attitudes toward risk, that incumbents’ strategies depend on the competitiveness of the race, and that candidates link negative campaigning to other aspects of their rhetorical strategies.

Social Science Computer Review

The Technological Development of Congressional Campaign Websites

Published: Jan 01, 2007 by Social Science Computer Review
Authors: James N. Druckman, Martin Kifer and Michael Parkin
Subjects: Communication Studies

In this article, we use data from congressional campaign web sites to examine how candidates approach web technology. We show that technological adoption is determined by both practical and strategic political considerations. Of particular interest, the competitiveness of a candidate's race leads the candidate to use more sophisticated presentation technologies but less advanced interactive innovations because these latter options interfere with the candidate's message.