"Agenda setting" in de verkiezingscampagne van november 1991 in Vlaanderen

  • Bart Maddens


Voters probably do not take a series of relevant issues into consideration but rather vote on the basis of the few issues that happen to be on their minds at the moment of the decision. Issue salience, i.e. the availability of issue-schema's, is to a certain extent determined by the political communication during the election campaign. A content analysis of the debates during the 1991 campaign shows that the socio-economic issues, the ethnic issue and the immigrant issue were on top of the agenda. A similar analysis of the party political broadcasts and the ads in the national newspapers indicates that the parties tried to focus the campaign on the socio-economie issues (christian-democrats, socialists), the functioning of the political system (socialists, liberals) and to a much lesser extent on the environmental issue (greens) and the communal issue (left-wing and right-wing Flemish nationalists). Only the latter nationalist party attempted to prime the immigrant issue. Survey data show that this issue was exceptionally salient in the electorate, as were the ethnic issue and the political system issue.

How to Cite:

Maddens, B., (1992) “"Agenda setting" in de verkiezingscampagne van november 1991 in Vlaanderen”, Res Publica 34(2), 175-207. doi:

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Published on
29 Jun 1992
Peer Reviewed