Relating news analysis and public opinion: applying a communications method as a 'tool' to aid interpretation of survey results

Statham, Paul and Tumber, Howard (2013) Relating news analysis and public opinion: applying a communications method as a 'tool' to aid interpretation of survey results. Journalism, 14 (6). pp. 737-753. ISSN 1464-8849

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Abstract

This article documents the methodological steps taken to use news analysis as a ‘tool’ for retrieving systematic information on political events to be used in the interpretation of findings from surveys on public opinion. The approach uses the selection function of mass media in producing ‘news’ as a proxy to identify the ‘political climate’ of a specific country at a specific time. This information on ‘political climate’ can be used to control whether ‘exceptional’ political events occurred during the period of fieldwork for surveys on public opinion that may have unduly biased the findings. Such a tool is especially useful for cross-national comparative survey research that is also longitudinal and the project described here was conducted within the framework of the European Social Survey (ESS). The specific news analysis method used to develop the tool draws inspiration from ‘claims-making analysis’.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Global Studies > Geography
Subjects: H Social Sciences
Depositing User: Paul Statham
Date Deposited: 30 Aug 2013 13:20
Last Modified: 30 Aug 2013 13:20
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/45970
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