I am an Associate Professor in the School of Media and Public Affairs at George Washington University, where I have taught since joining the department as an Assistant Professor in 2012. I previously spent two years as an Assistant Professor at Rutgers University’s School of Communication and Information. My research explores the internet’s impact on political associations — both in the formation of novel organizational structures seen in MoveOn and DailyKos, and also tracing implications for more traditional advocacy organizations. My first book, The MoveOn Effect: The Unexpected Transformation of American Political Advocacy was published in May 2012 by Oxford University Press. My second book, Analytic Activism: Digital Listening and the New Political Strategy was published in December 2016 by Oxford University Press.
This site is home to all my working papers and publications. I also write blog posts at Medium, ShoutingLoudly, and Civicist, and tweet as @davekarpf.
Previous academic positions have included a visiting fellowship with the Yale Information Society Project, a postdoctoral position at Brown University’s Taubman Center for Public Policy and a predoctoral fellowship at the University of Virginia’s Miller Center for Public Affairs. I earned my Ph.D. in political science from the University of Pennsylvania in 2009 and my B.A. in Politics from Oberlin College in 2002.
In addition to my academic portfolio, I am a longtime volunteer leader with the Sierra Club. I have been a member of that organization since 1995, served as National Director of their student-run arm in 1999, and served on their national Board of Directors from 2004-2010.