Comparative Case StudyWork Plan
PROFECI develops and employs a multi-layered mixed-method approach to study public projections, using a comparative design of six longitudinal case studies. It focuses on projections regarding highly salient political conflicts with far-reaching consequences, ranging from routine democratic elections, to exceptional referenda, to violent conflict. For its analysis, PROFECI relies on three retrospective case studies, whose outcomes are known, as well as three real-time cases, that are investigated as they unfold.

Retrospective Case I
2016 US Presidential Elections
How did expectations regarding an impossibile (or inevitable) Trump victory evolve and shape the dynamics of electoral choices?
Retrospective Case II
2020 US Presidential Elections
How did intensified polarization and uncertainty impact projection dynamics regarding the 2020 elections?
Retrospective Case III
Covid-19 Pandemic
How did projections regarding the pandemic interact with political and behavioral responses in the US, France, and Israel?
Real-Time Case I
2019–2020 Israeli Elections
How do varying degrees of uncertainty in the successive waves of elections influence people's expectations and projection strategies?
Real-Time Case II
Electoral Race
To be determined.
Real-Time Case III
Health Crisis
To be determined.
PROFECI studies the evolution of projections and their interaction with ongoing developments in each case over extended periods of time. By combining both retrospective and real-time case studies of projection in different kinds of settings, PROFECI aims to understand both the fast-moving interactions shaping current expectations at a micro-level, and the mostly slow and gradual evolution of public projections on a macro-level.
To study the social process of public projection, PROFECI proceeds in three main steps.
Analytic Framework. PROFECI's first stage serves to understand and conceptualize each of the key elements and processes involved in the collaborative, evolutionary construction and reception of public projections. For this purpose, the project gathers rich qualitative data, ranging from the strategies used by political actors, experts, journalists and others to construct and formulate projections, to the transformation and representation of projections in both news and social media, to the specific meaning and implications derived from public projections by members of the public.
Tool Development. PROFECI's second stage builds upon the conceptual understanding developed in the first stage to devise new strategies and tools capable of measuring each element and process at scale and over time. Specifically, PROFECI relies on a combination of computational techniques for the analysis of digital texts expressing public projections. In addition, the project develops tailored strategies for measuring the reception of public projections among the public, using adaptive rolling panel surveys.
Integrated Implementation. PROFECI's third stage applies the tools and strategies developed in stage two to trace the construction, negotiation, evolution and reception of public projections over time. For this purpose, PROFECI relies on six longitudinal case studies. Among these case studies, three are retrospective, enabling a reconstruction of public projection dynamics over extended periods of time. The other three case studies are studied in real-time while they evolve, enabling an analysis of micro-level interactions and dynamics.