An examination of young people’s relationships with politics and the media in Ireland in 2016

Carey, Rachel (2016) An examination of young people’s relationships with politics and the media in Ireland in 2016. Masters thesis, Griffith College.


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The purpose of this dissertation was to examine what type of relationship young Irish people had with both politics and the media in Ireland in 2016. Particular emphasis was placed on engagement between young people and politics and the role the media also plays in this engagement. The traditional opinion of this relationship, as suggested by the literature, claimed that young people and politics do not engage. The blame for this disengagement was placed on both sides of the relationship. The literature also suggested the media played a role, traditional forms of media and their role as agenda setters and gatekeepers were important factors in explaining why the disengagement had occurred. The research was conducted through both quantitative and qualitative methods in order to generate a significant amount of data to sufficiently answer the research questions. These questions were: does politics engage with young people? What role do the media play in the engagement between politics and young people? What can be done to improve relationships between young people, politics and the media? A survey of young people living in Ireland and interviews with representatives from young people involved in politics and the media were all undertaken. Their findings demonstrated that engagement between young people and politics corresponded to the literature and was in fact lacking. The role of the media also corresponded as both the survey and interviews suggested the media needed to do more to engage with young people on a political level. Social media also became a dominant factor in the findings as its role seems to become increasingly popular in both information gathering and engagement, with both politics and the media. Social media was deemed a potential way of engaging and rebuilding the fractured relationship between politics and young people if both politicians and young people do more to engage. Finally, recommendations were made for further study on the relationships young people have with politics and the media in Ireland. This further study is hoped to educate both sides about the relationship and eventually improve it.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Politics, Media, Ireland, Youth
Divisions: Faculty of Journalism & Media Communications > MA in Journalism & Media Communications
Depositing User: Ms Dimphne Ni Bhraonain
Date Deposited: 24 Aug 2016 12:07
Last Modified: 17 Oct 2016 13:23

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