Annual Conference of the Working Group “Elections and Political Attitudes”

akwahlen1From June 11-12, our team of empirical political researchers contributed in numerous ways to this year’s annual conference „Nichtwahl und non-elektorale Formen politischer Partizipation im Spiegel der Wahl- und Einstellungsforschung“ (“Non-Vote and Non-Electoral Ways of Political Participation Reflected by Election and Attitude Research”) organized by the DVPW (German Association of Political Scientists) working group „Wahlen und politische Einstellungen“ (“Elections and Political Attitudes”).

On Thursday, Daniela Hohmann and Thorsten Faas gave a talk on „Ein altes Wahlkampfinstrument im neuen Glanz: Welchen Beitrag können Haustürbesuche zur Mobilisierung von Wählern leisten? Analysen aus einem Feldexperiment im Kontext der Mainzer Kommunalwahl 2014” (“An Old Election Campaign Tool Shining in New Splendor: To Which Extend Can Door-to-Door Visits Mobilize Voters? Analyses from a Field Experiment within the Context of the 2014 Regional Election in Mainz“). Since the last Bundestag election, door-to-door election campaigning has regained public attention. In their analyses, the researchers found out that door-to-door visits have a positive effect on voter mobilization.

In her contribution „Krise oder Normalisierung der Demokratie: Wer will direkte Mitsprache?“ („Crisis or Normalization of Democracy: Who Wants a Direct Say?“), Julia Range asked who supports direct democracy and citizen participation. Her analyses are based on data from the research project Bürgerbeteiligung und direkte Demokratie in Baden-Württemberg („Citizen Participation and Direct Damocracy in Baden-Wuerttemberg). While the politically unsatisfied and less educated support citizen participation, she warned that these people might not actually use the potential of political participation.

akwahlen2On Friday, Christina Eder (GESIS) and Thorsten Faas gave a talk on „Gegen den Bahnhof = für grün-rot? Eine Analyse des Wahl- und Abstimmungsverhaltens in Baden-Württemberg 2011“ („Against the Train Station = in Favor of Green/Red? An Analysis of the voting behavior in Baden-Wuerttemberg in 2011). Eder and Faas traced the lines of conflict concerning the infrastructural project Stuttgart 21 and discussed its impact on the voting behavior of the Citizens of Baden-Württemberg in 2011.

Also, Benjamin Sack focused on Stuttgart 21 in his talk: „Der Effekt direkt-demokratischer Beteiligung auf Demokratiezufriedenheit und politisches Vertrauen“ (“The Effect of Direct Democratic Participation on the Satisfaction with Democracy and Political Trust). He examined the often assumed influence of direct democratic participation on the satisfaction with democracy and political trust. A first evaluation of the data showed that there are short-term effects on the satisfaction with democracy, which decrease in the long run, but that there is no impact on political trust.

Conference: „Internet killed the TV-Star?“

In cooperation with the institutes for media studies and media convergence, the team of empirical political research organizes the conference “Internet killed the TV-Star??. Experts from all relevant fields – science, media, and politics – will discuss latest developments and forward compatibility: How does the internet change TV and TV watching habits? How are hybrid TV forms established in law? Which role will big data play for future TV? How will future TV look like?
The conference will take place from 27 to 28 November. Participation is free. If you want to participate, please make a binding commitment:
For more information, take a look at our website:

PVS Special Issue 2015: „Political Psychology” – Authors’ Conference

PVS Sonderheft 2014Last week, Mainz was the capital of political psychology. In the course of preparation for the PVS Special Issue, edited by Cornelia Frank, Harald Schoen, and Thorsten Faas, more than 20 papers were presented and discussed. Many thanks to all who contributed and especially to the Fritz Thyssen Foundation, Freunde der Universität Mainz, and to DVPW, who made the conference possible!

Conference: Wahlkampf-Strategien 2013 (in German)

Wahlkampf Strategien

From June 11-12, three month before the Bundestag election, the campaign managers of the different parties as well as the heads of the advertizing agencies hired by CDU, SPD, The Greens, FDP, and Pirate Party will present their strategies and concepts for the 2013 electoral campaigning at a conference in Berlin. These presentations will be completed by journalistic and scientific statements and perspectives of which one will be contributed by Thorsten Faas.

The conference’s focus will be put on the latest trends observed in modern electoral campaigning: Which role does social media and last-minute decision making play? Which position is taken by the candidates? And is negative campaigning becoming an increasingly relevant phenomenon?
In order to achieve a large number of audience members, the conference will be broadcasted via live stream. Click here to access the conference’s flyer.