Kevin Rafter's research while affiliated with Dublin City University and other places

Publications (49)

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Objectives How do surges in female representation in public life affect media coverage? Can the media underrepresent the reality of women's progress? If so, is the source of underrepresentation the media itself or social elites that interact with the media? Methods Using automatic content analysis, we study two remarkable step changes in women's r...
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Cambridge Core - Irish Literature - A History of Irish Autobiography - edited by Liam Harte
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In the period between the 2009 and 2014 elections to the European Parliament, the international economic recession and related global debt crisis impacted seriously in several European Union (EU) member states. The rights and wrongs of debt fuelled growth and bank bailouts packages shaped political discourse not just in member states seeking sovere...
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Since the first set of direct elections to the European Parliament in 1979, no previous five-year interval between contests had been as dramatic or as fraught with such difficulty for the European Union (EU) as the years between the elections in 2009 and 2014. This period was singularly defined by a deep economic and financial crisis. The political...
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A parliamentary inquiry into the Irish banking collapse was formally established in November 2014, tasked with examining relevant issues from the period of January 1992 to December 2013. In focusing on the role played by the media - and where reportage may have impacted on, or contributed to, the crisis - the Banking Inquiry heard from eight senior...
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In the period between the 2009 and 2014 elections to the European Parliament, the international economic recession and related global debt crisis impacted seriously in several European Union (EU) member states. Greece, Ireland, Portugal and Cyprus all required external financial support. The word ‘Troika’ entered the vocabulary in these countries –...
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The Fianna Fáil general election campaign in 1977 is widely seen as a breakthrough in political communication and election campaigning in Ireland. This ‘modern’ and ‘professional’ campaign is considered a key contest between previous campaigns and those that followed. This article, however, challenges the view that the 1977 campaign marked a key mo...
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This research report considers the contest for leader of the Irish Labour Party in 2014. The report discusses how the selection of leaders in Irish political parties has evolved in a manner similar to the experience internationally. The contest in 2014 is examined with specific attention given to the organisation of the election, the campaign and i...
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On 18 September 2014, a referendum took place in Scotland to determine the question of Scottish independence. Soon after, the independence issue recurred strongly as a topic in the UK general election of May 2015. This volume examines the media coverage of the referendum, analyzing how it was reported and structured in the media in Scotland, the wi...
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When the News of the World (NOTW) closed in 2011, the title was the third best selling publication in the Sunday newspaper market in Ireland with a circulation level of just over 115,000 copies that accounted for some 12 per cent of all Irish Sunday sales. The overlap between the Irish and British newspaper markets — and the role of Irish editions...
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Political parties and election candidates use posters and TV spots to present themselves to the electorate in the hope of interesting them in their goals and promises and securing their support in the ballot box. This chapter draws on a study of poster and video spot advertisements in the 2014 elections. In section one relevant findings on the post...
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Discussion of balance in media coverage of politics is contentious, in part, because balance is notoriously difficult to define to the satisfaction of all those involved. Research in this area is generally focused on election news coverage to determine balance versus bias in visibility, favourability and success at securing attention for issues pro...
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This article examines the concept of the ‘political celebrity’ through a consideration of career change from journalism to politics. The celebrity appeal of well-known journalists should make them ideal election candidates, particularly given the importance in contemporary politics of public profile and communication skills. While individuals with...
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First published in January 1905, the Irish Independent is widely acknowledged as having been influenced by developments in journalism first associated, almost a decade earlier, with the Daily Mail in Britain. However, this article argues that while the Irish Independent adopted many elements of New Journalism its proprietor, William Martin Murphy w...
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Queen Elizabeth’s visit to the Irish Republic in May 2011 was seen by many as a significant moment in the long process of normalisation in Anglo-Irish relations, facilitated by the peace process in Northern Ireland. For journalists, it was a newsworthy story because it captured the values of this process of peace-making in a concrete, organised med...
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By means of a cross-longitudinal quantitative content analysis of the Chilean national press, this article analyses the changes in reporting styles and the framing of politics in news coverage between 2006 and 2011, exploring whether the features of political reporting found in studies of Western countries are evident in the case of Chile. Accordin...
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This book presents an overview of political communication in the Republic of Ireland from a multiplicity of perspectives and sources. It brings academics and practitioners together to examine the development, current shape, and the future trajectory of political communication in Ireland. The field of political communication, where politicians, publ...
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The conclusion observes that, since the foundation of the state, the relationship dynamics that are at the heart of political communication, have been in perpetual flux and have waxed and waned as political parties have come and gone and as new communication technologies have added to the multiplicity of means by which political communication, in i...
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This chapter argues that the issue of media influence on Irish elections is very much an open question. It sets out the main arguments about election campaigns and media coverage in the literature that looks at how the media might have an impact. It then looks at specific literature on Irish campaigns. It then examines, in detail, how national medi...
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This article focuses on the experts chosen as sources in radio news coverage at the start of Ireland's financial crisis in 2008. The study examines which source categories were afforded opportunities to discuss this major international news story at the start of the European financial crisis. Access to these news programmes allows guests to shape p...
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This article examines the relationship between different ownership types in broadcast news to determine the portrayal of election coverage as a strategic game against a focus on policy issues. Using a content analysis of six television and radio programmes during the 2011 Irish general election, we test hypotheses about differences in coverage prov...
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Trust in political institutions has declined in recent years. Most explanations for trust in political institutions focus on individual characteristics rather than the variation in trust for different political institutions and the characteristics of those objects of trust. Parliaments in Europe are surprisingly unpopular. For what are often essent...
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Media coverage of elections in Europe and North America has increasingly focused on the campaign as a game rather than a policy debate. This is often explained by the changes in media pressures. It may also reflect the narrowing of policy space between left and right and the comparative prosperity enjoyed in Europe and North America. But the releva...
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How the media should deal with information about the health of public figures remains a contentious issue in many countries. Many news outlets subscribe to the view that private lives should remain private unless public trust is broken or when private actions conflict with public positions. Controversy emerges over the exposure of marital infidelit...
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The framing of elections represents the most overt instance of the media’s power to influence politics. We content analyzed twelve newspapers’ coverage of the 2011 general election in Ireland. Ireland’s newspaper market has some special advantages for social scientists, as it allows us to separate the newspaper types/formats (tabloid vs. broadsheet...
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Information is a crucial ingredient in election campaigns. When voters form or change opinions they are widely thought to do so on the basis of information, attention to the information, predispositions, and the interaction of these (Zaller 1992). And voters usually receive most political information, or at least most intensely, during the course o...
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Full-text available
Media coverage of elections in Europe and North America has increasingly focused on the horse-race and the campaign as a game rather than a policy debate. This is often explained by the changes in media pressures. It may also reflect the narrowing of policy space between left and right and the comparative prosperity enjoyed in Europe and North Amer...
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This article examines the presidencies of Erskine Childers, Cearbhall Ó Dálaigh and Patrick Hillery during the period 1973–1990. Each of the presidential terms is examined in terms of the background of the incumbent, the circumstances of his nomination as president and his role in office. Commencing with the election of Erskine Childers, the role a...
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This article examines the regulation of political advertising on television and radio in Ireland where a restrictive set of rules prevent political parties and lobby groups from using the broadcast medium to communicate directly with the public. The current regime does provide qualifying political parties with access to a system of broadcasts durin...
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Magill magazine was an influential current affairs magazine which was first published in Dublin in October 1977. The magazine was owned by journalist Vincent Browne, who was also its first editor. Having worked in Belfast in the early 1970s Browne saw the conflict in Northern Ireland as one of the main concerns of the news agenda. This article exam...

Citations

... Because of the media bias against women in politics (Courtney et al., 2020;Lühiste & Banducci, 2016) we also interviewed 28 Czech women politicians to include more women's perspectives on quotas. The interviews were collected between 2018 and 2021 and include politicians from four political parties across the ideological spectrum. ...
... The news event provided by the news brand is sometimes biased or fake. The main focus of the news brand will be on the selected story, attitude towards citizens, and government (Breen et al. 2019). ...
... First, the right-wing New Democracy (ND) and the social democrats of PASOK (the latter represented through the 'Olive, Democratic Coalition') sought to emphasise positive aspects for Greece's economy and society in the EU. This positivity was more than evident in the main slogan of ND -'Steady steps ahead' (Poulakidakos and Veneti 2016;Novelli et al. 2017). The positive stance of these two parties was influenced by their pro-European political ideology and also the fact that they were members of the incumbent government coalition at the time of the 2014 elections, responsible for implementing several austerity policies dictated by the bailout agreements between Greece and the EU, IMF and ECB. ...
... The picture of relative normative stability indicated here is also congruent with the testimonies of senior editorial figures from major Irish media outlets, including RTÉ , to the Irish parliamentary inquiry into the banking collapse in Ireland in 2015, which as Rafter (2017) has argued betrayed little sense either of recognition of any specific editorial failures prior to the crash or changes instituted subsequently. ...
... They also responded to a real need, at a time in media history when the dominant players no longer hired enough people to absorb the influx of new journalists tempted by the profession (Edstrom & Ladendorf, 2012). While research on entrepreneurial journalism must take the measure of its contribution to the quest for collective sustainability, it must also pay particular attention to the individuals themselves who carry out these type of projects and to their individual aspirations: if for some it is a "life project", for others it can be a form of hope labor (Rafter, 2016) whose purpose can be to showcase their journalistic skills, build a portfolio and document their achievements (Allan, 2019). In other words, some entrepreneurial journalists are simply trying to show their employability to the media that can guarantee them better working conditions: while waiting to enter the profession "through a big door", the amount of hope labor required to grow their entrepreneurial project represents a significant additional workload (Scolere et al., 2018) that must be assumed alone. ...
... Since news media images have become an integral part of political communication and political news coverage (Harcup & O'Neill, 2017;Schill, 2012), consumers of digital media are exposed to many visual representations of war and terrorism, environmental deterioration or social inequality embedded in their daily media diet. Such news photographs hold strong potential to condense information, to encourage further reading and information seeking, to inspire the reader, generate emotions, and activate follow-up actions relevant to participatory civic engagement (Rafter, Novelli, & Holtz-Bacha, 2016). However, although a number of studies originating from communication and political science as well as media psychology have shown that visuals are an important information source, that they provide eye-catching cues for selection, and reduce selective exposure and enhance information processing (Graber, 1990(Graber, , 1996Zillmann, Knobloch, & Yu, 2001), these findings have not yet been transferred to research examining political participation online. ...
... Distinctive from other liberal systems, Ireland's media at this time was also deferential to politicians and, in particular, the Roman Catholic Church. Bishops influenced editorial copy while government ministers sought to prevent publication of stories deemed morally unsuitable, not to mind content they found politically unacceptable (Savage, 2010;Rafter, 2015). ...
... political power as a goal in and of itself, or. . . politicians and persons rather than as spokespersons for certain policies (Cappella and Jamieson, 1996: 74;McMenamin et al., 2013: 175;Rafter et al., 2014). ...
... The media in Ireland operates under the so-called Liberal Model, with key characteristics such as the early development of commercial newspapers with little state involvement, a strong tradition of political neutrality, an informational style of journalism, a relatively high level of journalistic professionalism, and traditions of no political interference of its public service broadcaster and regulatory authorities (Hallin & Mancini, 2004;Stromback, 2005). All newspapers in the Irish market tend to be internally pluralist and nonideological in their positioning (O'Malley et al., 2013). However, it is widely accepted that commercial pressures can influence the nature of news coverage. ...
... Cromwell (2012) argues that official sources are also trusted by the media as sources of stories because they are considered newsworthy and their perspectives legitimate, while unofficial sources are regarded as untrustworthy and unreliable. Because of this journalistic norm, news stories are often elite-oriented (Rafter, 2014;Carragee & Roefs, 2004). Rafter (2014) argues that, in instances where the media use sources with similar ideological or political perspectives, the chances are very high that those sources would influence the public's perception and interpretation of the event. ...