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Open Access iCoRe: The GDELT Interface for the Advancement of Communication Research

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Abstract

This article introduces the interface for communication research (iCoRe) to access, explore, and analyze the Global Database of Events, Language, and Tone (GDELT; Leetaru & Schrodt, 2013). GDELT provides a vast, open source, and continuously updated repository of online news and event metadata collected from tens of thousands of news outlets around the world. Despite GDELT’s promise for advancing communication science, its massive scale and complex data structures have hindered efforts of communication scholars aiming to access and analyze GDELT. We thus developed iCoRe, an easy-to-use web interface that (a) provides fast access to the data available in GDELT, (b) shapes and processes GDELT for theory-driven applications within communication research, and (c) enables replicability through transparent query and analysis protocols. After providing an overview of how GDELT’s data pertain to addressing communication research questions, we provide a tutorial of utilizing iCoRe across three theory-driven case studies. We conclude this article with a discussion and outlook of iCoRe’s future potential for advancing communication research.
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Keywords: big data; computational social science; event data; global database of events language and tone; online news; open science

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: October 1, 2019

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