Christian von Sikorski

Christian von Sikorski
Universität Koblenz-Landau · Department of Psychology (Landau)

Phd

About

65
Publications
23,574
Reads
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849
Citations
Citations since 2016
56 Research Items
824 Citations
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Introduction
Christian von Sikorski is a tenure track assistant professor of political psychology at the Department of Psychology, University of Koblenz-Landau, Germany. Before, he was a postdoctoral researcher at the Department of Communication (group led by Prof. Jörg Matthes), University of Vienna, Austria. His research focus is on political psychology, political communication as well as contents and effects of news media. He was a visiting researcher at New York University (NYU) and Chinese University of Hong Kong and received awards from the German & the International Communication Association (ICA) as well as from AEJMC (Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication).
Additional affiliations
August 2007 - March 2015
Deutsche Sporthochschule Köln
Position
  • PostDoc Position

Publications

Publications (65)
Article
Full-text available
At the beginning of 2020, COVID-19 became a global problem. Despite all the efforts to emphasize the relevance of preventive measures, not everyone adhered to them. Thus, learning more about the characteristics determining attitudinal and behavioral responses to the pandemic is crucial to improving future interventions. In this study, we applied ma...
Preprint
Full-text available
Children's movies and animated cartoons today increasingly include gay characters, which can be welcomed from an equal rights perspective. Yet, an intensive public debate has been initiated regarding the (age-) appropriateness of such depictions. So far, it is unclear how heterosexual adults react to gay characters in children's animated cartoons....
Preprint
For as long as people have expressed ideas, others have tried to censor them. Questions of censorship sit at the center of legal and political debates but are relatively unstudied in psychology. Here we explore when—and why—people endorse censorship. Across 5 studies, using both qualitative and quantitative data, we find that people want to censor...
Article
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Changing collective behaviour and supporting non-pharmaceutical interventions is an important component in mitigating virus transmission during a pandemic. In a large international collaboration (Study 1, N = 49,968 across 67 countries), we investigated self-reported factors associated with public health behaviours (e.g., spatial distancing and str...
Chapter
Previous research reveals that political scandals often have negative consequences for political candidates and may even result in resignation. However, politicians like Donald Trump frequently survive accusations of political misbehavior and intensive forms of scandalizing news coverage. Scholars have so far neglected to explain this phenomenon. W...
Article
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Rising political polarization is, in part, attributed to the fragmentation of news media and the spread of misinformation on social media. Previous reviews have yet to assess the full breadth of research on media and polarization. We systematically examine 94 articles (121 studies) that assess the role of (social) media in shaping political polariz...
Article
The hostile media phenomenon (HMP) refers to a process in which supporters and opponents of an issue perceive the identical coverage to be biased against their own views. Despite the relevance of visual communication in our field, scholars have treated hostile media perceptions as a text-based phenomenon ignoring the unique role of visuals. This pa...
Article
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We examined how Muslims are depicted in connection with Islamist terrorism and to what extent journalists use undifferentiated coverage – that actively links Muslims to terrorism – and differentiated coverage that actively differentiates Muslims from terrorism. Drawing from research in journalism studies and from terror management theory, we examin...
Article
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Islamist terrorist attacks have become a salient threat to Western countries, and news coverage about such crimes is a key predictor of public emotional reactions and policy support. We examine the effects of two key characteristics of terrorism news coverage: (1) the victim’s religion and (2) first-person narratives that facilitate perspective tak...
Article
Previous research in political communication has shown that visual news coverage can affect news consumers’ evaluations of political candidates. Yet, so far, the effects of subtle (positive/negative) visual background cues on candidate evaluation remain largely unclear. Also, the role of individuals’ media trust has not been explored in this contex...
Article
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Donald Trump frequently attacks foreign countries such as Germany (e.g., via Twitter). Drawing from social identity theory and intergroup threat theory, I theorized that exposure to news about Trump's anti-German utterances indirectly increases anti-Americanism in Germany. First, I theorized that Trump's utterances result in negative attitudes towa...
Article
Measurement of behavior in media psychology is concerned with the question of how media exposure affects individuals' behavioral patterns. Behavior is defined as an occurrence that emanates from a media user and that can be detected on the outside of an individual by an observer. Four central pillars that are key to the observation of behavior are...
Article
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The present study took an actor-based approach to explain news differentiation in terrorism coverage. Actors were defined as non-Muslim sources, Muslim sources, and journalists. Actors who generate undifferentiated statements actively link Muslims to terrorism, whereas actors who use differentiated statements explicitly distinguish Muslims from ter...
Article
The interference of so-called social bots in election campaigns has led to public outcries and heavy news coverage about the danger of social bots all over the world. Learning about social bots from news coverage may crucially influence media users' fears from social bots and may undermine trust in online political processes altogether. These negat...
Article
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The #MeToo movement has restarted an extensive and worldwide debate about sexual harassment especially directed against women. When women publicly accuse an alleged perpetrator they often do so with a strong delay and frequently come forward with allegations years after a harassment occurred. Yet, we lack research on how news about delayed sexual h...
Article
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Scandal severity may affect public perceptions of both scandalous political actors and news sources reporting political misconduct. Yet, research that has empirically tested these assumptions is lacking. Drawing from theory on anchoring effects, the results of two experimental studies conducted using mediation analyses revealed that severe scandals...
Article
We test the role of like-minded and cross-cutting political discussion as a facilitator of online and offline political participation and examine the role of strong versus weak network ties. Most prior research on the topic has employed cross-sectional designs that may lead to spurious relationships due to the lack of controlled variables. The find...
Article
Full-text available
Political scandals are highly relevant for political decision-making and democratic processes more generally. While most prior research employed experimental and cross-sectional survey studies, we tested the effects of a political scandal in the context of the 2017 Austrian Parliamentary Elections using panel data (N = 559, both waves). Importantly...
Chapter
Dem spezifischen Framing von persuasiven Botschaften im Gesundheitsbereich kommt eine große Bedeutung zu, da solche Kommunikate relevante Einflüsse auf erwünschte sowie gesundheitsförderliche Verhaltensweisen von Individuen hervorrufen können. Der Beitrag differenziert zunächst zwischen Äquivalenz- und Betonungs-Framing und zeigt deren Relevanz in...
Article
Dem spezifischen Framing kommt in der Gesundheitskommunikation eine große Bedeutung zu, da entsprechend gerahmte Kommunikate relevante Einflüsse auf erwünschte sowie gesundheitsförderliche Verhaltensweisen von Individuen hervorrufen können. Basierend auf insgesamt 167 englischsprachigen Fachzeitschriftenartikeln sowie 203 Einzelstudien mit mehr als...
Chapter
Der vorliegende Beitrag beleuchtet die Rolle von Bildern in der politischen Kommunikation aus unterschiedlichen Blickwinkeln. Neben verschiedenen theoretischen Zugängen wird die generelle Relevanz der visuellen politischen Kommunikation verdeutlicht. Inhaltliche Aspekte sowie Wirkungen visueller Darstellungen politischer Akteure werden unter Rückgr...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
We conducted two experimental studies to investigate how exposure to news coverage about social bots influences perceived threats from bots. Across both studies, we found that individuals perceived higher threats for their online political information behavior when the news media report about social bots in election campaigns without conveying lite...
Article
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Scholars have advanced many theoretical explanations for expecting a negative or positive relationship between individuals’ cross-cutting exposure—either through interpersonal or mediated forms of communication—and their political participation. However, whether cross-cutting exposure is a positive or negative predictor of participation is still an...
Article
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Political hypocrisy – a frequent feature of contemporary politics – oftentimes occurs when politicians resign from office and then engage in behavior that is in fundamental opposition to the standpoints they originally campaigned for as incumbents. Previous research has neglected to examine negative spillover effects of news about ex-politicians’ h...
Article
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Terrorist attacks committed by the so‐called Islamic State are rising in Western countries. How the news media portray these attacks may crucially influence emotional responses and support for anti‐Muslim policies such as immigration bans. Based on the Extended parallel response model (EPRM, Witte, 1992), we theorize that specific features of terro...
Article
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Research in information processing suggests that the journalistic practice of embedding right-wing populist Twitter posts in news may stimulate political polarization. To test this notion, we conducted an online experiment (N = 379). We investigated how highlighted right-wing populist statements affected individuals from different ideological stanc...
Article
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Previous framing effects research has largely examined textual and visual influences separately, thus neglecting potential interaction effects between the two communication channels. The present study used a 2 ´ 2 experiment to examine the textual and visual influences in a separate manner and in an integrated way. It was tested how, if at all, tex...
Chapter
In this book, 30 contributions provide a comprehensive overview of theories and findings from research on political attitudes and political behaviour, subdivided into the fields of ‘political communication’, ‘political attitudes’, ‘political participation’, ‘voting behaviour’ and ‘methods’.
Article
Colorectal cancer is one of the most prevalent types of cancer in Germany. The provided governmental program for early detection of colorectal cancer intends to increase the chances of recovery by identifying colorectal cancer at an early, more treatable stage. An information module with quality-assured, balanced, and target-group specific informat...
Article
Full-text available
We examined how the journalistic differentiation of Muslims from Islamist terrorists and terror news proximity (i.e., proximity of terroristic acts to viewing audience) influence the effects of news reports about terrorism by the Islamic State on Islamophobic attitudes. Drawing from social identity theory, findings from two experimental studies rev...
Article
Full-text available
Two experimental studies investigated how news reports about terrorist attacks committed by unidentified perpetrators influence beliefs about the perpetrators and Muslims in general. In Study 1, a quota-based sample of 354 Germans was exposed to terror news coverage describing either non-Muslim or Muslim victims with no reference to the perpetrator...
Article
Full-text available
Journalists are frequently reporting about new and innovative products in news articles. Oftentimes, journalists use specific company and product information provided by enterprises that highlight a corporation’s social responsibility (CSR) activities. Based on framing theory and theory of reasoned action, an experiment was conducted to examine how...
Article
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This Introduction provides the conceptual and theoretical context for a Special Section on political scandals. Mediated political scandals are today a worldwide phenomenon, and are not limited only to liberal democracies. A main aim of this Special Section, drawing on papers and studies about scandals in the US, China and Europe, is to discuss the...
Article
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This article represents the first attempt to examine the effects of political scandals via meta-analysis. Seventy-eight studies, collectively including more than 54,000 participants, were identified and examined. A quantitative analysis revealed that the number of studies has steadily increased. Research predominantly stems from North America and E...
Article
Full-text available
Journalists tend to serialize political scandals and publish scandalous information bit by bit instead of all at once in a single news article. Disseminating scandalous information in a serialized way may affect readers' perceptions of the scandal and the politicians involved in it independently of the information that is conveyed. To test this ass...
Article
In their depictions of scandalized politicians, journalists frequently use news images that highlight the (alleged) isolation of politicians. To test how this way of portraying political actors affects a recipient’s attitudes and his/her guilt perception toward such a scandalized politician an experiment was conducted. All participants were exposed...
Article
Full-text available
Reports about political scandals have increased lately. Yet the general impact of news visuals and the specific role of lightness and darkness cues in images of scandalized politicians remain unclear. With the help of an experiment, the present pilot study examined the influence of candidate images and the effects of particular image backgrounds (l...
Chapter
Der vorliegende Beitrag beleuchtet die Rolle von Bildern in der politischen Kommunikation aus unterschiedlichen Blickwinkeln. Neben verschiedenen theoretischen Zugängen wird die generelle Relevanz der visuellen politischen Kommunikation verdeutlicht. Inhaltliche Aspekte sowie Wirkungen visueller Darstellungen politischer Akteure werden unter Rückgr...
Article
Full-text available
The key assumption of spiral of silence theory is that opinion climate perceptions affect political opinion expression. We meta-analyzed the strength of this relationship and clarified the impact of theoretically relevant moderators. Sixty-six studies collectively including more than 27,000 participants were located. We observed a significant posit...
Chapter
Full-text available
The present entry deals with the question of how behavioral effects of (mass-)mediated communication can be systematically measured. Behavior is defined as an occurrence that emanates from an organism or may be detected by an observer on the outside of an organism (e.g., media recipient). A three-stage process for measuring behavior in communicatio...
Article
Full-text available
When a celebrity receives negative news coverage, his or her endorsements of politicians can pose negative consequences for the politicians. We investigated such negative consequences with the help of two experimental studies. In Study 1 (celebrity involved in tax scandal), we manipulated whether an endorsement was initiated by a politician or a ce...
Article
Im vorliegenden Forschungsüberblick werden alle verfügbaren deutsch- und englischsprachigen Studien, die sich mit der Verbreitung und Darstellung politischer Skandalberichterstattung beschäftigt haben, systematisch analysiert. Die Ergebnisse von insgesamt 20 quantitativen Studien zeigen, dass es in den vergangenen beiden Dekaden länderübergreifend...
Article
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Previous research shows that news about Islamist terrorism can seriously affect citizens’ fear reactions and influence non-Muslims’ out-group perceptions of Muslims. We argue that news coverage that explicitly links Islam to terrorism or terrorists of the Islamic State (IS) may trigger fears in non-Muslim individuals. In contrast, news differentiat...
Article
Previous research shows that one-sided and uncivil reader comments posted below professionally edited online news articles may affect a recipient’s perception of the specific issue at hand. However, it remains largely unclear whether specific comments affect a reader’s perception of an individual actor depicted in an online news article. An online...
Article
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Reader comments posted below online news articles may affect a reader's issue perception. However, it remains unknown how people are influenced by commenters' social status information (high versus low). Potential effects were examined in a 2 (opposing/supporting/no comments) × 2 (high-status/low-status/no comments) between-subjects online experime...
Article
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http://de.in-mind.org/article/journalismus-20-wie-die-kommentare-und-sozialen-informationen-der-anderen-unsere-wahrnehmung?utm_source=rssfeed&utm_medium=rssfeed&utm_campaign=general
Article
The stereotypical media coverage of persons with physical disabilities (PWDs) has been repeatedly criticized, because biased depictions of PWDs can negatively affect nondisabled recipients’ attitudinal evaluations of PWDs. However, it remains unclear how the superordinate context of disability, which is frequently used by journalists to depict PWDs...
Article
Previous studies have demonstrated that the media, by specifically framing news articles, may systematically affect a nondisabled recipient’s perception of athletes with disabilities (AWDs). However, it remains unclear how specific sports news frames affect a recipient’s quality perception of a journalistic product and if news frames further affect...
Article
Full-text available
The international media coverage of athletes with physical disabilities (AWD) shows diverse quantitative and qualitative shortcomings. This study explores what effects a specific visual framing in a print article about disability sports has on recipients’ attitudes toward a depicted AWD. In an experiment with a 3 (framed conditions) × 2 (participan...
Article
The international media coverage of disability sports displays diverse quantitative and qualitative shortcomings and shows that disability sports issues are frequently framed in unfavorable and negative ways. This study explores the effects of (valenced) issue-specific news frames in a disability sports communication. In an experimental study (betw...
Article
Full-text available
Dieser Beitrag untersucht mit Hilfe des Impliziten-Assoziations-Tests (IAT) stereotypes Denken, das Rezipienten den medialen Darstellungen von Athleten mit Behinderung entgegenbringen. In drei Vorstudien wurden zunächst relevante Eigenschaftsbegriffe zu den Bereichen „Sport“ und „Behinderung“ ermittelt (n = 143) und hinsichtlich ihrer Valenz sowie...

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Projects

Projects (2)
Project
Assessing the amount and structure of media coverage on political scandals and measuring its effects on political attitudes and political behavior
Project
The project deals with two general questions: 1. How are political scandals covered in the news? 2. How do news about political scandals affect citizens' perception of political processes and individual political actors?