The Belgian Agendas Project is currently in its second incarnation. This second phase is carried out by the University of Antwerp and has focused on developing comparative standards for the collection of media, executive and partisan data. For more details on the project, its members and the data, please consult our website Media, Movements and Politics or contact Stefaan Walgrave.

Currently the following data have been collected:

  • Party manifestos (1978-2008)
  • Ministerial Councils (1990-2008)
  • Parliament:
    • Bills (1990-2008)
    • Written and oral questions (1990-2008)
  • Government agreements (1978-2008)
  • State of the union speeches (1992-2008)
  • The media agenda (one newspaper from the French and Dutch speaking halves of Belgium)
  • Ministry of foreign affairs press releases (2001-2010)


Team members

Project Coordinator
Prof. Stefaan Walgrave, University of Antwerp, Belgium
Stefaan Walgrave is professor of political science at the University of Antwerp (Belgium). His research focuses on political communication and on social movements and protest. Within political communication, he directed an earlier agenda-setting project in Belgium covering the 1991-2000 period. He has mainly done work on the political agenda-setting power of the media and on how political parties interact with mass media and has published about these topics in journals like Journal of Communication, Political Communication, Journal of European Public Policy and Comparative Political Studies.
[email protected]

Anne Hardy, University of Antwerp, Belgium
Anne Hardy is a member of the M2P research group in Antwerp since 2009. She worked on the ENA project and is currently involved in the Comparative Agendas Project. Her research focuses on the causes, mechanisms and political consequences of media dynamics.
[email protected]

Jeroen Joly, University of Antwerp, Belgium
Jeroen Joly is a PhD student in political science and researcher at the University of Antwerp, Belgium. His main research interests are comparative politics of public policy making. His current research focuses on the impact and the role of the media, parties, and issue types on foreign policy dynamics.
[email protected]

Christophe Lesschaeve, University of Antwerp, Belgium
Christophe Lesschaeve is a PhD student and researcher at the University of Antwerp, and is currently working on the IUAP-project PARTIREP. His main research interests are “mass/elite” political congruence and the degree to which political congruence varies between societal segments and policy domains. [email protected]

Julie Sevenans, University of Antwerp, Belgium
Julie Sevenans is a PhD student in political communication at the University of Antwerp. She got involved in the Comparative Agendas Project through her work as a coder for the project. Her research focuses on individual political actors’ information acquisition and processing, whereby special attention is given to the political agenda-setting power of the mass media.
[email protected]

Former Members
Brandon C. Zicha, LUC The Hague, The Netherlands
Brandon Zicha is a PhD student in political communication and researcher at the University of Antwerp, Belgium as well as a PhD candidate in political science at Binghamton University (SUNY), U.S.A.  His research focuses on policy representation, political parties , and constitutional design in advanced industrial democracies.  His dissertations address the speed with which policy changes are made in different constitutional and party systems.


Previous project
In its first incarnation, using the Eurovoc topic classification system, the team collected the following data:

  • The public opinion-agenda, composed out of several (divers) public opinion data throughout the nineties
  • The parliamentary political, containing the questions and answers, and interpellations in the federal parliament.
  • The parliamentary legislative agenda, containing the legislative output of the federal parliament
  • The budget-agenda
  • The political Party-agenda (Party-programs)
  • The government-agreements-agenda
  • The Council of Ministers-agenda (based on the content and decisions of the federal governments weekly meetings)
  • The media-agenda (Two TV-channels, and 2, respectively 3 newspapers from the French-speaking and Dutch-speaking part of the country)
  • The Real-World-Indicators (The actual facts, where available and reliable)
  • The Civil Society-agenda, based on on the one hand a database of protest marches in the nineties, and on the other hand the issues on which the civil society organizations get media-exposure.