A leader without a party: Exploring the relationship between Geert Wilders' leadership performance in the media and his electoral success

Daphne van der Pas*, Catherine de Vries, Wouter van der Brug

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Most existing studies of leadership effects on electoral success employ survey data only. This time-series study combines a content analysis of media appearances of the right-wing populist leader Geert Wilders in 2006 with his party's popularity in the polls. The content analysis focuses on three aspects of the media coverage: (1) visibility, (2) whether he articulates a vision for the future, and (3) his self-confidence. Wilders was selected because as a leader without a party he represents the most likely case to find media effects. Var-analysis showed a significant positive effect of 'vision' on media attention, and a negative effect of popularity in the polls on visibility in the media. Yet, the study finds little support for the 'leadership hypothesis', and thus contributes to literature showing that the effects of the representation of political leaders in the media are more limited than often assumed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)458-476
Number of pages19
JournalParty Politics
Volume19
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2013
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • content analysis
  • leaders' activities
  • new parties
  • party leaders
  • The Netherlands

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'A leader without a party: Exploring the relationship between Geert Wilders' leadership performance in the media and his electoral success'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this