Analysis of Political Campaigns - 1st semester


To contribute to the understanding of the complexity and the relevance of political campaigns in the contemporary world, the systemic and short-term constraints to the design and implementation of political campaigns and the factors that contribute to its success. Develop the necessary skills to analyse political campaigns of different kinds and with different geographic scopes.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Sara Figueiredo Pina


Weekly - 4

Total - Available soon

Teaching language





Norris, P. (2000). A virtuous circle: Political communications in postindustrial societies. Cambridge: CUP.

Schmitt-Beck, R., & Farrel, D. (2002). Do political campaigns matter? Campaign effects in elections and referendums. London: Routledge.

O’Day, B. J. (2006). Political campaign planning manual, A step by step guide to winning elections. National Democratic Institute for International Affairs. Disponível Online.

Vavreck, L. (2009). The message matters. The economy and presidential campaigns. Princeton: PUP.

Teaching method

In class teaching

Evaluation method

Student performance will be assessed through the following elements:

• Written exam covering all the programmatic contents of the course (40% of the final grade).
• In groups of 4-5 students: Analysis of a political campaign. Presentation in class + written paper (7000-8000 words) (35% of the final grade)
• Individual in-class presentation of a text selected from the bibliography (15% of the final grade)
• Participation in class (10% of final grade).

Subject matter

1. Introduction to Political Communication and Political Marketing
2. Political Campaigns: Definition, Typologies and Evolution
3. Building a Campaign
4. Old and new media in the political campaign process
5. The institutional context: electoral systems, parties and elections
6. Analysis of Campaigns in Legislative Elections
7. Analysis of Campaigns in Presidential Elections
8. Analysis of Campaigns in European Elections
9. Analysis of Campaigns in Local Elections
10. Analysis of Referenda Campaigns
11. Factors of Success and Failure of Campaigns
12. The Future of Political Campaigns: Main trends


Programs where the course is taught: