The First Amendment guarantees Americans the right to petition their government, and the White House’s petition platform also grants them the ability to analyze, visualize, and view petition data. The We The People application programming interface (API) lets users access the catalog of about 350,000 petitions and get the full text along with signature counts, whether the petition earned a response, and other data. The data is also available for bulk download. Several projects have already made use of the API, including an analytics dashboard for petitions and a tool to conduct sentiment analysis on petition text.
Travis Korte is a research analyst at the Center for Data Innovation specializing in data science applications and open data. He has a background in journalism, computer science and statistics. Prior to joining the Center for Data Innovation, he launched the Science vertical of The Huffington Post and served as its Associate Editor, covering a wide range of science and technology topics. He has worked on data science projects with HuffPost and other organizations. Before this, he graduated with highest honors from the University of California, Berkeley, having studied critical theory and completed coursework in computer science and economics. His research interests are in computational social science and using data to engage with complex social systems. You can follow him on Twitter @traviskorte.