Search result: 42 articles

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Research Note

Caretaker Cabinets in Belgium: A New Measurement and Typology

Journal Politics of the Low Countries, Issue Online First 2020
Keywords caretaker government, Belgium, cabinets, political crisis
Authors Régis Dandoy and Lorenzo Terrière
AbstractAuthor's information

    Belgium is probably the world’s best known case of where caretaker governments reside. Yet a clear scholarly definition and measurement of this concept is missing. Based on a detailed analysis of the Belgian federal cabinets, this research note explores the main characteristics and measures the length of the various caretaker periods. We find that Belgium was governed for no less than 1,485 days by a caretaker government between 2007 and 2020, which equals more than four full calendar years. This research note also presents a novel typology of caretaker periods based on the institutional and political practice within the Belgian legislative and executive branches. This typology can be used to assess caretaker periods at other levels of government as well as in other countries in order to improve our understanding of the many ‘faces’ that a caretaker government can take on.


Régis Dandoy
Université Libre de Bruxelles

Lorenzo Terrière
Universiteit Gent
Article

Introduction: Parties at the Grassroots

Local Party Branches in the Low Countries

Journal Politics of the Low Countries, Issue 2 2020
Authors Bram Wauters, Simon Otjes and Emilie van Haute
Author's information

Bram Wauters
Bram Wauters is Associate Professor in the Department of Political Sciences of Ghent University, where he leads the research group GASPAR. His research interests include political representation, elections and political parties, with specific attention for diversity. He has recently published on these topics in journals such as Party Politics, Political Studies, Politics & Gender and Political Research Quarterly. He is co-editor (with Knut Heidar) of ‘Do parties still represent?’ (Routledge, 2019).

Simon Otjes
Simon Otjes is Assistant Professor of Dutch Politics at Leiden University and researcher at the Documentation Centre Dutch Political Parties of Groningen University. His research focuses on political parties, parliaments and public opinion. His research has appeared in various journals, including American Journal of Political Science and European Journal of Political Research.

Emilie van Haute
Emilie van Haute is Chair of the Department of Political Science at the Université libre de Bruxelles (ULB) and researcher at the Centre d’étude de la vie politique (Cevipol). Her research interests focus on party membership, intra-party dynamics, elections and voting behaviour. Her research has appeared in West European Politics, Party Politics, Electoral Studies, Political Studies or European Political Science. She is co-editor of Acta Politica.
Article

An Actor Approach to Mediatization

Linking Politicians’ Media Perceptions, Communication Behaviour and Appearances in the News

Journal Politics of the Low Countries, Issue Online First 2020
Keywords mediatization, politicians, news media, media perceptions, news management
Authors Pauline Ketelaars and Peter Van Aelst
AbstractAuthor's information

    In the light of the broader debate on the mediatization of politics, this study wants to better understand how the media perceptions and media behaviour of politicians are related to their appearances in the news. We opt for an innovative actor-centred approach to actually measure the views and actions of individual politicians. We combine surveys conducted with 142 Belgian representatives with data on politicians’ external communication behaviour and on their appearances in television news, newspapers and news websites. The results show that media behaviour is not so much related to beliefs of media importance. We do find a significant positive relationship between strategic media behaviour and media attention suggesting that politicians who put in more effort appear more often in various news media. However, this positive relationship depends on the specific form of strategic communication and the political position of the legislator. Our study adds to the mediatization literature by showing how and when politicians are successful in obtaining media attention.


Pauline Ketelaars
Pauline Ketelaars, University of Antwerp, Antwerpen, Belgium.

Peter Van Aelst
Peter Van Aelst, University of Antwerp, Antwerpen, Belgium. Corresponding Author.
Research Note

Campaigning Online and Offline: Different Ballgames?

Presidentialization, Issue Attention and Negativity in Parties’ Facebook and Newspaper Ads in the 2019 Belgian General Elections

Journal Politics of the Low Countries, Issue Online First 2020
Keywords political advertising, Belgium, social media, newspapers, campaign
Authors Jonas Lefevere, Peter Van Aelst and Jeroen Peeters
AbstractAuthor's information

    This Research Note investigates party advertising in newspapers and on social media (Facebook) during the 2019 general elections in Flanders, the largest region of Belgium. The 2019 elections saw a marked increase in the use of social media advertising by parties, whereas newspaper advertising saw a decline. Prior research that compares multiple types of advertising, particularly advertising on social and legacy media remains limited. As such, based on a quantitative content analysis we investigate not just the prevalence of party advertising on both types of media, but also compare the level of negativity, presidentialisation, and issue emphasis. Our analysis reveals substantial differences: we find that not only the type of advertisements varies across the platforms, but also that social media ads tend to be more negative. Finally, parties’ issue emphasis varies substantially as well, with different issues being emphasized in newspaper and Facebook advertisements.


Jonas Lefevere
Jonas Lefevere is assistant professor of communications at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel.

Peter Van Aelst
Peter Van Aelst is a research professor at the department of political science at the University of Antwerp.

Jeroen Peeters
Jeroen Peeters is a PhD student at the department of political science at the University of Antwerp.
Literature Review

Access_open Preference Voting in the Low Countries

A Research Overview

Journal Politics of the Low Countries, Issue 1 2020
Keywords elections, electoral systems, preference voting, candidates, personalization
Authors Bram Wauters, Peter Thijssen and Patrick Van Erkel
AbstractAuthor's information

    Preference votes constitute one of the key features of (open and flexible) PR-list electoral systems. In this article, we give an extensive overview of studies conducted on preference voting in Belgium and the Netherlands. After elaborating on the definition and delineation of preference voting, we scrutinize studies about which voters cast preference votes (demand side) and about which candidates obtain preference votes (supply side). For each of these aspects, both theoretical approaches and empirical results are discussed and compared. At the same time, we also pay attention to methodological issues in these kinds of studies. As such, this research overview reads as an ideal introduction to this topic which has repercussions on many other subfields of political science.


Bram Wauters
Bram Wauters is an associate professor at the Department of Political Sciences of Ghent University, where he leads the research group GASPAR. His research interests include political representation, elections and political parties, with special attention to diversity. He has recently published in journals such as International Political Science Review, Party Politics, Political Studies, and Political Research Quarterly. He is co-editor (with Knut Heidar) of ‘Do parties still represent?’ (Routledge, 2019).

Peter Thijssen
Peter Thijssen is a professor at the Department of Political Science of the University of Antwerp, where he is a member the research group M2P (Media, Movements and Politics). His research focuses on political sociology, public opinion and political participation. He has published in such journals as British Journal of Sociology, Electoral Studies, Energy Policy, European Journal of Social Theory, Party Politics and Risk Analysis. He has co-edited ‘New Public Spheres’ (Ashgate, 2013) and ‘Political Engagement of the Young’ (Routledge, 2016).

Patrick Van Erkel
Patrick van Erkel is a postdoctoral researcher at the Department of Political Science of the University of Antwerp, where he is connected to the research group M2P (Media, Movements and Politics). His research interests include electoral behavior, public opinion, political communication and polarization. He has published in journals such as the European Journal of Political Research, Electoral Studies, European Political Science Review and the Journal of Elections, Public Opinion & Parties.
Research Notes

Paid Digital Campaigning During the 2018 Local Elections in Flanders

Which Candidates Jumped on the Bandwagon?

Journal Politics of the Low Countries, Issue 3 2019
Keywords local elections, candidates, campaign spending, digital campaigning
Authors Gunther Vanden Eynde, Gert-Jan Put, Bart Maddens e.a.
AbstractAuthor's information

    This research note investigates the role of paid digital campaigning in the 2018 local elections in Flanders. We make use of the official declarations which candidates are legally required to submit. In these declarations, candidates indicate whether and how much they invested in online campaigning tools during the four months preceding the elections. We collected data on a sample of 3,588 individual candidates running in the 30 municipalities of the Leuven Arrondissement. A multilevel logistic regression model shows that the odds of spending on digital campaigning increases among incumbent aldermen and local councillors. The latter finding supports the normalization thesis of digital campaigning. The results also show that scale is important – the more potential voters a candidate has, the higher the odds that the candidate invests in digital tools.


Gunther Vanden Eynde
Gunther Vanden Eynde is a doctoral researcher at the KU Leuven Public Governance Institute. His research interests include political finance, campaign spending and the social media campaigns of Belgian political parties and their candidates.

Gert-Jan Put
Gert-Jan Put is a Senior Researcher at the Research Center for Regional Economics, KU Leuven. His research focuses on candidate selection and intra-party competition, and has been published in Political Behavior, Party Politics and Electoral Studies.

Bart Maddens
Bart Maddens is a professor of political science at the KU Leuven Public Governance Institute His research interests include political finance, elections and multi-level systems. His work has been published in West European Politics, Party Politics and Electoral Studies.

Gertjan Muyters
Gertjan Muyters is a doctoral researcher at the KU Leuven Public Governance Institute. His research focuses on candidate turnover and political careers.
Article

How to Improve Local Turnout

The Effect of Municipal Efforts to Improve Turnout in Dutch Local Elections

Journal Politics of the Low Countries, Issue 3 2019
Keywords turnout, local elections, get out the vote, campaign, the Netherlands
Authors Julien van Ostaaijen, Sabine van Zuydam and Martijn Epskamp
AbstractAuthor's information

    Even though many municipalities use a variety of means to improve turnout in local elections, citizen participation in local elections is a point of concern in many Western countries, including the Netherlands. Our research question is therefore: How effective are municipal efforts to improve turnout in (Dutch) local elections? To this end, we collected data from three sources: (1) a survey sent to the municipal clerks of 389 Dutch municipalities to learn what they do to improve turnout; (2) data from Statistics Netherlands on municipalities’ socio-demographic characteristics; and (3) data on the turnout in local elections from the Dutch Electoral Council database. Using hierarchical multiple regression analysis, we found that the direct impact of local governments’ efforts to improve turnout is low. Nevertheless, some measures seem to be able to make a difference. The relative number of polling stations was especially found to impact turnout.


Julien van Ostaaijen
Julien van Ostaaijen is assistant professor of public administration at the Tilburg Institute of Governance (Tilburg University).

Sabine van Zuydam
Sabine van Zuydam is assistant professor of public administration at the Tilburg Institute of Governance (Tilburg University) and researcher at Necker van Naem.

Martijn Epskamp
Martijn Epskamp is a researcher of the municipality of Rotterdam (Research and Business Intelligence department)
Article

Split-Ticket Voting in Belgium

An Analysis of the Presence and Determinants of Differentiated Voting in the Municipal and Provincial Elections of 2018

Journal Politics of the Low Countries, Issue 3 2019
Keywords split-ticket voting, local elections, voting motives, Belgium, PR-system
Authors Tony Valcke and Tom Verhelst
AbstractAuthor's information

    This article tackles the particular issue of split-ticket voting, which has been largely overlooked in Belgian election studies thus far. We contribute to the literature by answering two particular research questions: (1) to what extent and (2) why do voters cast a different vote in the elections for the provincial council as compared to their vote in the elections for the municipal council?
    The article draws on survey data collected via an exit poll in the ‘Belgian Local Elections Study’, a research project conducted by an inter-university team of scholars.
    Our analysis shows that nearly 45% of the total research population cast a split-ticket vote in the local elections of 2018. However, this number drops to one out of four if we only consider a homogenous party landscape at both levels by excluding the numerous votes for ‘local’ lists (which occur mostly at the municipal level). This finding underlines the importance of accounting for the electoral and institutional context of the different electoral arenas in research on split-ticket voting in PR systems. In the Belgian context, split-ticket voting in 2018 also differed between the different parties and regions. Furthermore, it was encouraged by a higher level of education and familiarity with particular candidates. This candidate-centred and strategic voting was matched by party identification and the urban municipal context favouring straight-ticket voting. Other factors such as region, a rural municipal context and preferential voting seemed more relevant to determine voting for local parties than using the instrument of split-ticket votes as such.


Tony Valcke
Tony Valcke is Associate Professor at the Faculty of Political and Social Sciences of Ghent University (Belgium). He is a member of the Centre for Local Politics (CLP) and coordinator of the Teacher Training Department. His research, publications and educational activities focus on elections and democratic participation/innovation, (the history of) political institutions and (local) government reform, political elites and leadership, citizenship (education).

Tom Verhelst
Tom Verhelst is Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Political and Social Sciences at Ghent University (Belgium) and a postdoctoral research fellow at the Department of Political Science at Maastricht University (the Netherlands). His research focuses on the Europeanisation of local government (with a particular interest for the regulatory mobilisation of local government in EU decision-making processes) and on the role and position of the local council in Belgium and the Netherlands (with a particular interest for local council scrutiny).
Research Notes

Sub-Constituency Campaigning in PR Systems

Evidence from the 2014 General Elections in Belgium

Journal Politics of the Low Countries, Issue 3 2019
Keywords Sub-constituency campaigning, PR system, political advertisements, election campaign, content analysis
Authors Jonas Lefevere, Knut De Swert and Artemis Tsoulou-Malakoudi
AbstractAuthor's information

    Sub-constituency campaigning occurs when parties focus their campaign resources on specific geographical areas within an electoral district. This behaviour was traditionally thought to occur only in single-member plurality elections, but recent research demonstrates that proportional systems with multi-member districts can also elicit sub-constituency campaigning. However, most studies of sub-constituency campaigning rely on self-reported measures of campaigning, not direct measures of campaign intensity in different regions and communities. We present novel data on geographical variations in the intensity of Flemish parties’ campaign advertising during the 2014 general elections in Belgium, which provides a direct measure of sub-constituency campaigning. Our findings show clear evidence of sub-constituency campaigning: parties campaign more intensely in municipalities where they have stronger electoral support and in municipalities with greater population density.


Jonas Lefevere
Jonas Lefevere is assistant professor at Vesalius College and the Institute for European Studies (VUB). His research interests include the strategic communication of political elites, the effects of campaign communication on political attitudes and electoral choice and the role of issue perceptions in electoral behavior.

Knut De Swert
Knut De Swert is Assistant Professor, Political Communication and Journalism, at the Amsterdam School of Communication Research (University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands). His research is situated in the field of media and politics, and mainly focuses on the quality of (political) journalism and foreign news in a comparative perspective.

Artemis Tsoulou-Malakoudi
Artemis Tsoulou-Malakoudi is a student research assistant for the EOS research project RepResent which focuses on representation and democratic resentment. She is currently following a Research Master’s at the University of Amsterdam with an interest in political communication research.
Article

Twee handen op één buik?

Hoe en waarom de mediatisering van de Vlaamse politiek en particratie hand in hand gaan

Journal Res Publica, Issue 4 2018
Keywords mediatisation, particracy, media logic
Authors Peter Van Aelst
AbstractAuthor's information

    There is a growing consensus that politics have become mediatised. News media have become more independent and are more guided by their own routines and standards and less by what political actors deem important. However, this paper argues that this has not led to a decrease of the power of political parties. In Belgium, particracy and mediatisation seem to go hand in hand. There are mainly two reasons for this. Firstly, media attention focuses heavily on politicians with power and in that sense, media logic and party logic overlap. Secondly, parties have adjusted well to the media and their logic, among others by integrating journalists in the party organisation. We expect that social media will gradually become more important for politicians, but that this evolution too will change little to the central position of political parties in our democracy.


Peter Van Aelst
Peter Van Aelst is onderzoeksprofessor aan het departement Politieke Wetenschappen van de Universiteit Antwerpen en lid van de onderzoeksgroep Media, Middenveld en Politiek. Hij doet onderzoek naar de oorzaken en gevolgen van de mediatisering van de politiek, verkiezingscampagnes, nieuwe media en politiek nieuws. Zijn onderzoek verschijnt in toonaangevende internationale tijdschriften, maar ook in publicaties voor een breder publiek.
Article

Het financiële gedrag van politieke partijen

Een verkennend onderzoek op basis van de Belgische case

Journal Res Publica, Issue 2 2018
Keywords party spending, financial behaviour, spending behaviour, dealignment, professionalisation, Belgium
Authors Jef Smulders and Bart Maddens
AbstractAuthor's information

    In recent decades processes of partisan dealignment and professionalisation have taken place. But how do political parties adapt their financial behaviour to these changes in the political-electoral system? We answer this question by analysing two indicators. First, we examine to what extent parties spend their available financial means (saving versus spending strategy). Secondly, we study how parties spend their available financial means (bureaucratic versus electoral strategy). Based on these two indicators we set up a two-dimensional model describing the financial behaviour of political parties, which we apply to data of Belgian parties in the period 1999-2015. The results illustrate that most parties generally adopt a bureaucratic saving strategy, but that there has not been a linear evolution between 1999 and 2015 towards a specific financial behaviour as a reaction to dealignment and professionalisation.


Jef Smulders
Jef Smulders is aspirant van het Fonds Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek - Vlaanderen (FWO), verbonden aan de KU Leuven, Instituut voor de Overheid. Hij verricht voornamelijk onderzoek naar partij- en campagenfinanciering en naar de profielen van verkiezingskandidaten. Zijn doctoraatsproefschrift handelde over de uitgaven van politieke partijen in Europa.

Bart Maddens
Bart Maddens is gewoon hoogleraar in de politieke wetenschappen aan de KU Leuven, Instituut voor de Overheid. Zijn onderzoeksagenda richt zich hoofdzakelijk op partijen campagnefinanciering, politieke carrièrepatronen, de profielen van verkiezingskandidaten en multilevelsystemen.
Article

Benadrukken partijen eigen thema’s in verkiezingstijd?

Een onderzoek naar thematische aandacht van Nederlandse partijen rond de verkiezingen van 1994 tot en met 2012

Journal Res Publica, Issue 3 2016
Keywords issue ownership, elections, Netherlands, political parties, issue convergence
Authors Fleur Vis and Jonas Lefevere
AbstractAuthor's information

    Issue ownership theory argues that the public considers some parties as more capable to handle certain issues. Issue ownership is important, because parties tend to receive more votes if their owned issues dominate the campaign. Consequently, issue ownership theory expects parties to emphasize issues they own, while ignoring issues owned by their competitors. This study investigates to what extent Dutch parties emphasized issues they own, before and after the seven Dutch national elections held between 1994 and 2012. It uses a detailed content analysis of four Dutch newspapers, that tracked parties’ issue attention. The results show that parties tend to emphasize owned issues more, both compared to other issues and compared to their competitors. A surprising finding is that parties tend to emphasize owned issues more during the formation period compared to the campaign. Moreover, government parties emphasize owned issues less than opposition parties.


Fleur Vis
Fleur Vis is student Communicatiewetenschap aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam. Zij heeft zich tijdens haar afstudeeronderzoek gericht op het domein van de politieke communicatie en doet onderzoek naar issue ownership.

Jonas Lefevere
Jonas Lefevere is universitair docent aan de Amsterdam School of Communications Research (Universiteit van Amsterdam). Hij doet onderzoek naar de mate waarin verkiezingscampagnes kiezers beïnvloeden en strategische partijcommunicatie. Hij publiceerde over deze onderwerpen in onder meer Party Politics, Political Communication en Communication Research.
Research Note

Wat maakt partijcommunicatie nieuwswaardig?

Een experimenteel onderzoek naar journalistieke nieuwsselectie

Journal Res Publica, Issue 2 2016
Authors Luzia Helfer and Peter Van Aelst
Author's information

Luzia Helfer
Luzia Helfer was promovenda aan de Universiteiten van Leiden en Antwerpen en bestudeerde door middel van experimenten de invloed van media en politiek. Zij heeft inmiddels een aanstelling als docente bij de Graduate School of Communication van de Universiteit van Amsterdam.

Peter Van Aelst
Peter Van Aelst is hoogleraar aan het Departement Politieke Wetenschappen van de Universiteit Antwerpen en lid van de onderzoeksgroep Media, Middenveld en Politiek (M2P). Zijn onderzoek situeert zich voornamelijk in de domeinen van de politieke communicatie en vergelijkende politiek.
Article

Vragen naar de bekende weg?

Een analyse van informatiebronnen waarop schriftelijke vragen over Europese zaken in de Nederlandse Tweede Kamer zijn gebaseerd

Journal Res Publica, Issue 2 2016
Keywords national parliaments, European Union, parliamentary questions, the Netherlands
Authors Rik de Ruiter, Jelmer Schalk and Yorick van Rijthoven
AbstractAuthor's information

    This paper analyses the information sources members of the Dutch Lower House base their questions on with regard to EU affairs in the period 1995-2013. Knowledge of the type of information sources to base questions on is vital for determining what the conditions are under which members of national parliaments can scrutinize the decisions taken by the national government at the EU level. The involvement of national parliaments in EU affairs is according to many scholars a necessary condition for closing the democratic deficit of the European Union, especially when the turnout in elections for the European Parliament remains low and for national parliaments remains stable and relatively high. An original dataset is constructed including all sets of written parliamentary questions on EU affairs asked by Dutch MPs in the period 1995-2013, categorized by different types of information sources on which the question is based. These different categories of information sources are regressed with a variable measuring the Treaty changes impacting on the intensity of contact between MPs of different national parliaments and several variables measuring the characteristics of Dutch MPs and their parties. The findings indicate that Dutch MPs base their written questions primarily on coverage on EU affairs by national newspapers. Moreover, MPs are more likely to use sources rooted in a national context for asking questions when they are a member of a party with a negative attitude towards European integration. These findings imply that parliamentary control via written questions over the decisions of the national executive at the EU level can be strengthened by increasing national media coverage on EU affairs, allowing the EU public sphere to develop further in the future.


Rik de Ruiter
Rik de Ruiter is als universitair docent Bestuurskunde verbonden aan het Instituut Bestuurskunde van de Universiteit Leiden. Zijn onderzoeksinteresse gaat uit naar politiek, beleid en bestuur van de Europese Unie.

Jelmer Schalk
Jelmer Schalk is als universitair docent bestuurskunde verbonden aan het Instituut Bestuurskunde van de Universiteit Leiden. Zijn onderzoeksinteresse gaat uit naar publiek management, interorganisationele netwerken en sociale netwerkanalyse.

Yorick van Rijthoven
Yorick van Rijthoven (MSc.) is een recent afgestudeerd bestuurskundige aan de Universiteit Leiden en heeft zich gespecialiseerd in internationale en Europese bestuurskunde. Zijn onderzoeksinteresse gaat uit naar o.a. interparlementaire samenwerking over EU-aangelegenheden, het EU-besluitvormingsproces en (internationaal) publiek management.

    In this paper we investigate the effect of political sophistication on turnout and whether this effect differs in second-order national elections. Political sophistication is thought to influence turnout because the more sophisticated voters have access to more information about the electoral and the party system. In this paper, we start from the expectation that these effects should be even stronger in the context of secondorder national elections, where information about the stakes of the election is not readily available. We analyse citizens’ willingness to turn out to vote at different levels of government in Belgium and the Netherlands. The results show that a higher degree of political sophistication increases the probability to turn out at the national as well as the European level. Our expectation that this effect would be larger at the European level, however, is not supported by these results.


Dieter Stiers
Dieter Stiers werkt als doctoraatsstudent aan het Centre for Citizenship and Democracy van de KU Leuven. Zijn onderzoek richt zich op verkiezingsgedrag en in het bijzonder op de oorzaken en gevolgen van electorale volatiliteit.
Article

Van de krant naar de Kamer en terug?

Een studie naar media-aandacht als inspiratie voor en resultaat van het Nederlandse vragenuur

Journal Res Publica, Issue 4 2015
Keywords Question hour, media attention, parliamentary questions, newspaper coverage, content analysis
Authors Peter Van Aelst, Rosa van Santen, Lotte Melenhorst e.a.
AbstractAuthor's information

    This study on the role of media attention for the Dutch question hour answers these questions: to what extent is media attention a source of inspiration for oral parliamentary questions? What explains the newsworthiness of these questions? And what explains the extent of media coverage for the questions posed during the question hour? To address this, we present a content analysis of oral parliamentary questions and related press coverage in five recent years. Results show first that oral questions are usually based on media attention for a topic. Concerns about media influence should however be nuanced: it is not necessarily the coverage itself, but also regularly a political statement that is the actual source of a parliamentary question. The media are thus an important ‘channel’ for the interaction between politicians. Second, our analysis shows that oral questions do not receive media attention naturally. Several news values help to explain the amount of news coverage that questions receive. ‘Surfing the wave’ of news attention for a topic in the days previous to the question hour seems to be the best way to generate media attention.


Peter Van Aelst
Peter Van Aelst is hoofddocent aan het Departement Politieke Wetenschappen van de Universiteit Antwerpen en lid van de onderzoeksgroep Media, Middenveld en Politiek (M2P). Daarnaast is hij deeltijds verbonden aan de Universiteit Leiden als coördinator van een VIDI-project ‘Beyond Agenda-setting’, een vergelijkende studie naar de wederkerige relatie tussen media en politiek.

Rosa van Santen
Rosa van Santen is projectleider bij het Commissariaat voor de Media. Daarvoor werkte zij als postdoc bij het Instituut voor Politieke Wetenschap van de Universiteit Leiden op het VIDI-project ‘Beyond Agenda-setting’. Ze promoveerde in 2012 bij de Amsterdam School of Communication Research van de Universiteit van Amsterdam.

Lotte Melenhorst
Lotte Melenhorst is promovenda bij de Instituten voor Politieke Wetenschap van de Universiteit Leiden en de Universiteit Antwerpen en lid van de onderzoeksgroep Media, Middenveld en Politiek (M2P). Haar onderzoek maakt deel uit van het VIDI-project ‘Beyond Agenda-setting’ en concentreert zich op de rol van de media bij de totstandkoming van wetgeving.

Luzia Helfer
Luzia Helfer is promovenda bij de Instituten voor Politieke Wetenschap van de Universiteit Leiden en de Universiteit Antwerpen en lid van de onderzoeksgroep Media, Middenveld en Politiek (M2P). In haar onderzoek bij het VIDI-project ‘Beyond Agendasetting’ bestudeert zij mechanismes in de wederkerige relatie tussen politiek en media, onder andere door middel van experimenteel onderzoek.
Article

Het primacy-effect in proportionele systemen gewikt en gewogen

De casus van de Antwerpse districtsverkiezingen 2012

Journal Res Publica, Issue 1 2015
Keywords preferential voting, political candidates, primacy effect, media, campaigns
Authors Patrick van Erkel and Peter Thijssen
AbstractAuthor's information

    Previous research shows that the position on the ballot list strongly influences the electoral success of candidates. However, the underlying mechanisms of this effect remain unclear. The list position can have a direct influence through a so-called primacy effect, parties may anticipate on the success of candidates, or the effect can be mediated by factors such as media attention and campaign intensity. Using data from the Antwerp district elections in 2012, this paper disentangles these mechanisms. Our study confirms the direct ballot list position effect, providing evidence for the existence of a primacy effect. However, we find that part of the ballot list position effect is mediated by media attention, especially for the first candidate on the list. Campaign intensity also influences the electoral success of candidates, but does not mediate the list position effect. Finally, we find no evidence that parties successfully anticipate on the electoral success of candidates.


Patrick van Erkel
Patrick van Erkel is medewerker en doctoraatsstudent aan het Departement Politieke Wetenschappen van de Universiteit Antwerpen. Tevens is hij lid van de onderzoeksgroep Media, Middenveld en Politiek (M2P). Zijn doctoraat richt zich op het verklaren van electoraal succes van individuele kandidaten.

Peter Thijssen
Peter Thijssen is hoofddocent aan het Departement Politieke Wetenschappen van de Uni versiteit Antwerpen. Hij is lid van de onderzoeksgroep Media, Middenveld en Politiek (M2P). Zijn onderzoek spitst zich toe op de wisselwerking tussen publieke opinie en politieke participatie.

Peter Van Aelst
Peter Van Aelst is hoofddocent aan het Departement Politieke Wetenschappen van de Universiteit Antwerpen en aan het Instituut voor Politieke Wetenschap van de Universiteit Leiden en lid van de onderzoeksgroep Media, Middenveld en Politiek (M2P). Zijn onderzoek situeert zich voornamelijk in de domeinen van de politieke communicatie en vergelijkende politiek.

Kees Aarts
Kees Aarts is hoogleraar politicologie aan de Universiteit Twente en wetenschappelijk directeur van het Institute for Innovation and Governance Studies aldaar. Zijn onderzoeksbelangstelling gaat uit naar democratie, verkiezingen en kiezersgedrag.
Article

De impact van digitale campagnemiddelen op de personalisering van politieke partijen in Nederland (2010-2014)

Journal Res Publica, Issue 1 2015
Keywords personalization, social media, election campaigns, party politics
Authors Kristof Jacobs and Niels Spierings
AbstractAuthor's information

    Politicians have started to use social media more often. As such media induce personal campaigning, one might expect more personalization to follow. We explore what type of personalization social media stimulate, whether this is different for Twitter and Facebook and analyze the role of parties. We make use of quantitative and qualitative data about the Netherlands (2010-2014). We find that while theoretically the impact of social media may be big, in practice it is fairly limited: more presidentialization but not more individualization (though Twitter might increase the focus on other candidates slightly). The difference between theory and practice seems largely due to the parties. They adopt a very ambiguous stance: though they often stimulate candidates to use social media, they want to keep control nonetheless.


Kristof Jacobs
Kristof Jacobs is als universitair docent verbonden aan de Vakgroep Politieke Wetenschappen van de Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen. Zijn onderzoek richt zich op politieke partijen, sociale media, kiesstelsels en uitdagingen van de democratie.

Niels Spierings
Niels Spierings is universitair docent bij de Afdeling Sociologie aan de Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen. Zijn specialismen zijn politieke en gendersociologie en onderzoeksmethoden. Thematisch focust hij op sociale media, politieke participatie en democratisering, genderongelijkheid, de politieke en economische positie van vrouwen, migratie, islam, en intersectionaliteit. Samen met Kristof Jacobs coördineert hij het project VIRAL (www.ru.nl/VIRAL).
Article

Van goudwaarde in verkiezingstijden?

Electorale presidentialisering van het burgemeesterschap in Vlaanderen

Journal Res Publica, Issue 1 2015
Keywords mayor, elections, preference votes, personalization, presidentialization
Authors Johannes Rodenbach, Bram Wauters and Kristof Steyvers
AbstractAuthor's information

    Presidentialization involves a shift in focus from collective actors (such as parties) to one person, in this case the mayor. It is a specific form of personalization which focusses on one rather than on several individuals. Electoral presidentialization, which constitutes one of the diverse features of this phenomenon, was studied at the local level in Flanders (Belgium). By formulating hypotheses based on theoretical and empirical insights on personalization (referring to several politicians), we have tried to figure out whether presidentialization differs from personalization. From our results, it appears that mayors indeed attract a huge share of preferential votes, but also that most factors that influence personalization have an impact on presidentialization too. These include both individual variables (such as media attention and incumbency) and municipal variables (such as size of the municipality and number of parties). Although both trends differ in nature, the factors influencing them appear to be similar.


Johannes Rodenbach
Johannes Rodenbach is als doctoraal onderzoeker verbonden aan het Centrum voor Lokale Politiek, onderdeel van de Vakgroep Politieke Wetenschappen van de Universiteit Gent. Hij bereidt een scriptie voor rond de presidentialisering van het burgemeesterschap in Vlaanderen en werkt mee aan het ‘European Mayor’-project, een comparatief onderzoek naar burgemeesters in 28 Europese landen.

Bram Wauters
Bram Wauters is als docent verbonden aan de Faculteit Politieke en Sociale Wetenschappen van de UGent, waar hij de onderzoeksgroep GASPAR (www.gaspar.ugent.be) leidt. Zijn onderzoek gaat over verkiezingen, partijen en politieke representatie, met bijzondere aandacht voor ondervertegenwoordigde groepen.

Kristof Steyvers
Kristof Steyvers is hoofddocent aan de Vakgroep Politieke Wetenschappen van de Universiteit Gent. Zijn onderzoek situeert zich daar in de context van het Centrum voor Lokale Politiek. Het is gericht op lokaal politiek leiderschap, verkiezingen en partijen op lokaal niveau, hervormingen aan het lokaal bestuur, de democratische verankering van lokale netwerkverbanden, vergelijkende lokale politiek en stadspolitiek en stedenbeleid.
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