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Voters and Voting in ContextMultiple Contexts and the Heterogeneous German Electorate$
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Harald Schoen, Sigrid Roßteutscher, Rüdiger Schmitt-Beck, Bernhard Weßels, and Christof Wolf

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198792130

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198792130.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 18 May 2021

Agenda-Setting Dynamics during the Campaign Period

Agenda-Setting Dynamics during the Campaign Period

(p.13) 2 Agenda-Setting Dynamics during the Campaign Period
Voters and Voting in Context

Julia Partheymüller

Oxford University Press

It is widely believed that the news media have a strong influence on defining what are the most important problems facing the country during election campaigns. Yet, recent research has pointed to several factors that may limit the mass media’s agenda-setting power. Linking news media content to rolling cross-section survey data, the chapter examines the role of three such limiting factors in the context of the 2009 and the 2013 German federal elections: (1) rapid memory decay on the part of voters, (2) advertising by the political parties, and (3) the fragmentation of the media landscape. The results show that the mass media may serve as a powerful agenda setter, but also demonstrate that the media’s influence is strictly limited by voters’ cognitive capacities and the structure of the campaign information environment.

Keywords:   campaign effects, agenda setting, memory decay, political advertising, media fragmentation

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