Florian Richter and Philipp Koch
In its 70-year history, the Bundestag has always been a place for lively debate and the parliamentary marketplace of our democracy. The German Grundgesetz defines a transparent policy of the content and processes in Parliament, but so far this promise lacks behind the digital standards of the 21st Century. As a project between data and political science the team behind Open Discourse has broken open all plenary protocols since 1949. Over 500,000 pages of text, 800,000 speeches by over 4,200 speakers and 2.5 million reactions from all political groups form the data basis. With methods of computer science and computational linguistics we have assigned and made searchable all speeches, heckling, queries etc. of the respective politicians and parliamentary groups and added numerous meta information to the database. How has political discourse changed in the last 70 years? What is the thematic proximity of politicians to one another? What is the relative proportion of women and men speaking from the various parties? Citizens, journalists and scientists can now search the plenary minutes for keywords, politicians and offices and download the whole dataset for their own research. In our talk we will give an overview of interesting findings from 70 years of parliamentary discourse in Germany, with results and analysis from our cooperation with data scientists from the Data4Good network CorrelAid and diverse university student’ projects.