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The media election surveys

The Media Election Studies has examined election news coverage in Sweden since the general election of 1979.

The research program focuses on how election news coverage influences the election outcome, and on factors explaining the news content.

Bengt Johansson and Jesper Strömbäck have since 2018 taken over responsibility for the Media Election Studies, which are carried out in collaboration with Institutet för mediestudier. The new Media Election Studies is a fusion of the previous studies at JMG and the ones conducted at Mid Sweden University.


Kent Asp started this research program which since 1979 has analyzed the news coverage during the last four weeks before election day. Until today, ten election campaigns have been analyzed. The most influential news media - daily press, tabloid press, public service and commercial television, and public service radio are included in the analysis. The referendum on nuclear power 1980, on entering the EU in 1994, and on joining the EMU in 2003 have been examined using the same research design.

Coding instructions are described in detail in the technical report from 1998 (attached).


Book coverResults from The Media Election Studies have been published in journal articles, books and reports.

The analysis of the 2018 election campaign was performed by Bengt Johansson and Jesper Strömbäck at JMG in collaboration with Institutet för mediestudier.

The study is published in the book Kampen om mediebilden – nyhetsjournalistik i valrörelsen 2018 (Institutet för mediestudier, 2019).

The analysis can be downloaded as a pdf here (only in Swedish).


Book cover The analysis of the 2014 election campaign was performed by Bengt Johansson at JMG, and was published in the book När makten står på spel. Journalistik i valrörelser (When power is at stake. Journalism during Election campaigns) with Bengt Johansson and Lars Truedson as editors (only in Swedish).

A comparative analysis of the period 1979-2010 was published in the book Mediekratin – mediernas makt i svenska val (Mediacracy – Media Power in Swedish Elections) by Kent Asp and Johannes Bjerling.

Project leaders

Professor Bengt Johansson and professor Jesper Strömbäck.


Page Manager: Mats Ekström|Last update: 11/17/2019

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