Varieties of Media Effects (VARME)

Research project
Active research
Project period
2019 - 2024
Project owner
Department of journalism, media and communication (JMG)

The European Research Council (ERC)

Short description

Research on how media influence citizens’ perceptions about societal problems has been dominated by a focus on short-term effects. As such, most of what we currently know about media effects on public opinion is based on studies that analyze on short-term changes of perceptions and attitudes.

By switching the focus from a short-term to a long-term perspective, this program aims at studying a broader variety of media effects on citizens’ perceptions about societal problems. The program focuses on how media coverage and selective media usage influence how such perceptions (1) initially form, how they (2) are maintained and (3) reinforced over time, as well as what factors that generate (4) temporary and (5) more lasting changes of opinions.

Empirically, the program builds upon three projects that focus on citizens’ perceptions about a variety of societal problems. These projects combine various longitudinal surveys and focus groups, event-driven data collections, extensive media content analyses as well as several experiments, in order to capture both processes and mechanisms behind media effects.

Project members

Affiliated scholars