Cognitive, Affective or No Engagement? How Young Adults in Austria Deal with Media Coverage on the EU
C. Ortner - Cognitive, Affective or No Engagement? How Young Adults in Austria Deal with Media Coverage on the EU - Sociální studia/Social Studies, Vol. 15, No. 2, 2018, pp. 55-73
Drawing on qualitative and quantitative data from a mixed-method study, this paper analyses 30 cases to find out, how and why young adults in Austria engage in media coverage on the EU. The analyses shows, that young people react quite differently to media reports on this topic. While some pay attention, actively search for information and intensively deal with EU content (cognitive engagement), others do not follow European affairs but react emotional when they come across it (affective engagement). The third group is characterised by a very low overall level of engagement. Both, intensity and form of engagement depend on young people’s satisfaction with EU media coverage, their general relation to information media, politics and the EU and their willingness to make efforts. Finally, the data suggest that political cynicism does not necessarily lead to disengagement, but rather to a more emotional and less constructive form of engagement.