This project investigates why societal problems gain or lose attention on the political agenda and how this agenda-setting process matters for policy decisions. The political agenda is the set of issues that are the subject of decision making and debate within a given political system. It is well-described in the agenda-setting literature how political systems tend to ignore even very serious problems for prolonged periods of time: from global warming through underperforming schools to child poverty. Agenda-setting models have been remarkably successful at describing the process of agenda-setting and policy change. What we need to know much more about is: 1) why some problems are kept off the political agenda at certain points in time, and 2) why problems that do get on the political agenda only sometimes cause public policy responses.

A longer description of the project can be found here.

Project activities

Comparative Local Government Workshop

On March 9-10, 2017, the CAPCAS project will host a workshop in Aarhus about comparative local gvernment in the Nordic Region. The workshop is financed by a Nordic Network Grant received by Matt Loftis, and the partipants will be local government scholars from Denmark, Norway, and Sweden.

ECPR workshop on The Politics of Information

April 26-29, 2017, Peter B. Mortensen will be director (with Stefaan Walgrave) of an ECPR workshop, where scholars from Europe and the U.S. will meet and present research related to the core research questions of theCAPCAS project.

New publications

Loftis, Matthew & Peter B. Mortensen. 2017. "A New Approach to the Study of Partisan Effects on Social Policy", Journal of European Public Policy (forthcoming).

Mortensen, Peter B. & Henrik Bech Seeberg. 2016. "Why Are Some Policy Agendas Larger than Others?", Policy Studies Journal, 44, 2, 156-175.


Link to previous activities