John Wilkerson (Professor, CAPPP Director), Nicholas Stramp (Graduate Fellow), and David Smith (Assistant Professor, College of Computer and Information Science, Northeastern University) are investigating whether computer science text reuse methods commonly used to match gene sequences or to detect plagiarism can also be used to follow policy ideas through the legislative process. Their initial test case is the Affordable Care Act, where they have been able to trace important provisions of the bill that became law back to other bills sponsored by Democrats as well as Republicans. The project has been featured on The Monkey Cage blog. and most recently featured as a Daily Chart by The Economist.
Tegrity recording of UW eScience presentation (February 26, 2014)