Campaigning in the Twenty-First Century

A Whole New Ballgame?

By Dennis W. Johnson

© 2011 – Routledge

140 pages

Purchasing Options:
Paperback: 9780415800389
pub: 2010-12-20
US Dollars$41.95
Hardback: 9780415800372
pub: 2010-12-20
US Dollars$160.00

e–Inspection Copy

About the Book

So much has changed during the past decade in political campaigning that we can almost say "it's a whole new ball game." This book analyzes the way campaigns were traditionally run and the extraordinary changes that have occurred in the last decade. Dennis W. Johnson looks at the most sophisticated techniques of modern campaigning—micro-targeting, online fundraising, digital communication, the new media—and examines what has changed, how those changes have dramatically transformed campaigning, and what has remained fundamentally the same despite new technologies and communications.

Campaigns are becoming more open and free-wheeling, with greater involvement of activists and average voters alike. But they can also become more chaotic and difficult to control. Campaigning in the Twenty-First Century presents daunting challenges for candidates and professional consultants as they try to get their messages out to voters. Ironically, the more open and robust campaigns become, the greater is the need for seasoned, flexible and imaginative professional consultants.


"Dennis Johnson has done it again—produced a fascinating book on contemporary campaigning that is important, informative, and a fun read. Campaigning in the Twenty-First Century explains how technology has changed campaign communications and message targeting at a level of precision hardly imagined when we began to use today’s must-have devices a mere fifteen years ago. Beginning and advanced students of campaigns alike will want to read this book."

Robin A. Kolodny, Temple University

"In this well-written and comprehensive book, Dennis Johnson explains several of the most profound changes in professional campaigning and campaign management over the past decade. Campaigning in the Twenty-First Century deserves praise for its exceptional insights into the dynamics of the modern political campaign. It belongs in any course on campaigns and elections, and comes highly recommended for anyone who wants to understand how campaigns operate in the twenty-first century."

Peter L. Francia, East Carolina University

"Campaigning in the Twenty-First Century is a thoroughly original and refreshing account of modern campaigning, steeped in practical observations and grounded in the latest scholarship. Recommended to practitioners, professors, and the public at large."

David C. King, Harvard University

"This work will appeal to students of political campaigns as well as those interested in the increasing use of new media in politics and government."

J.D. Rausch, Choice, September 2011

Table of Contents

1. The Modern Campaign 2. Communicating with Voters: The New Media 3. Communicating with Voters: The Old Media 4. Fundraising 5. Independent Voices 6. Taking the Pulse of the Electorate 7. Voter Identification, Contact, and Mobilization 8. Campaigning in the Next Decade

About the Author

Dennis W. Johnson is professor of political management at the Graduate School of Political Management, George Washington University. He is author of No Place for Amateurs: How Political Consultants Are Reshaping American Democracy, Second Edition, and Congress Online: Bridging the Gap Between Citizens and Their Representatives; and editor of the Routledge Handbook of Political Management and Campaigning for President 2008. For ten years he owned his own political research consulting firm.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Government / Legislative Branch
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Political Process / Elections
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Government / Executive Branch