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Verschafft die direkte Demokratie den Benachteiligten mehr Gehoer? Der Einfluss institutioneller Rahmenbedingungen auf die mediale Praesenz politischer Akteure


Hoeglinger, D (2008). Verschafft die direkte Demokratie den Benachteiligten mehr Gehoer? Der Einfluss institutioneller Rahmenbedingungen auf die mediale Praesenz politischer Akteure. Swiss Political Science Review, 14(2):207-243.

Abstract

This article examines how institutional context factors influence political actors' opportunities to express their voice. For the empirical evaluation we draw on three decades of abortion debate in Switzerland, Germany and the US. We show that institutionally conditioned power differentials considerably determine the media standing of political actors. This puts particulary emerging civil society actors, such as social movements, at a disadvantage. For the Swiss case, however, we argue that direct democratic procedures countervail this effect, as they allow outsiders to make their mark in the public debate. Moreover, we find that the political parties, which are known to have a rather weak position in the Swiss institutional framework, also benefit from this. With our article we wish to support the call for a contextualisation of political communication research in terms of an "institutional turn" and to highlight the potential of comparative studies in this field.

This article examines how institutional context factors influence political actors' opportunities to express their voice. For the empirical evaluation we draw on three decades of abortion debate in Switzerland, Germany and the US. We show that institutionally conditioned power differentials considerably determine the media standing of political actors. This puts particulary emerging civil society actors, such as social movements, at a disadvantage. For the Swiss case, however, we argue that direct democratic procedures countervail this effect, as they allow outsiders to make their mark in the public debate. Moreover, we find that the political parties, which are known to have a rather weak position in the Swiss institutional framework, also benefit from this. With our article we wish to support the call for a contextualisation of political communication research in terms of an "institutional turn" and to highlight the potential of comparative studies in this field.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Political Science
Dewey Decimal Classification:320 Political science
Uncontrolled Keywords:Comparative Political Communication Public Sphere Direct Democracy Abortion
Language:German
Date:2008
Deposited On:19 Dec 2008 14:33
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 12:37
Publisher:Swiss Political Science Association
ISSN:1424-7755
Official URL:http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/spsa/spsr/2008/00000014/00000002/art00001
Related URLs:http://new.spsr.ch/ (Publisher)
Permanent URL: http://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-6596

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