Determining the Drivers and Dynamics of Partisanship and Polarisation in Online Public Debate

Rapidly increasing partisanship and polarisation, especially online, poses an urgent threat to societal cohesion in Australia and other established western democracies; polarisation is also a critical cybersecurity concern when actively promoted by bad-faith actors to undermine citizens’ trust in democratic institutions. By introducing an analytical framework that distinguishes four key dimensions of polarisation, this Australian Laureate Fellowship conducts the first-ever assessment of the extent and dynamics of polarisation in the contemporary online and social media environments of six nations, including Australia. The evidence is expected to enable an urgently needed, robust defence of our society and democracy against the challenges of polarisation.


DMRC research program

This project contributes to the research within the following DMRC research program:

Digital Publics Program


Project team


Project funding

ARC Laureate Fellowship (2022-26)



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