University of Twente Student Theses


Newspaper Influences on Voters in the Brexit Referendum

Brueggemann, T. (2016) Newspaper Influences on Voters in the Brexit Referendum.

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Abstract:The United Kingdom voted on 23th of June, 2016 to leave the European Union in the so called Brexit referendum. This referendum was accompanied by exhaustive media campaigns that tried to convince their audiences to vote either “leave” or “remain”. The influences of news media on voters in the context of referendums were investigated. The content of the campaigns of four different newspapers was analysed and their focuses and positions were compared to their readership, which was assessed via an online survey. The data was used to see in how far agenda setting theory and framing effects are applicable on voters that are subject to newspaper campaigns in a referendum. In the comparison between what newspapers and their readers mentioned as important a significant difference was found. At the same time, it was possible to observe framing effects as the position of the newspapers towards the referendum was able to predict the voting behaviour of readers. These findings suggest that news media are able to influence the public in referendums via framing, but they did not seem to be able to affect the readers’ salient topics.
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology, 88 social and public administration, 89 political science
Programme:Management Society and Technology BSc (56654)
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