Societal Security team member Kajsa Hammargård has published an article Journal of European Public Policy together with Eva-Karin Olsson on the rhetoric of the president of the European Commission in crisis situations.
Despite efforts made to improve communication, the Commission is still facing difficulties getting across its messages. Scholars have stressed how both structural and personal characteristics impede the Commission’s ability to communicate. These obstacles are particularly troublesome in connection to crisis situations when the European Union receives the most media attention and scrutiny. At the national level, research has shown that political actors tend to increase their use of charismatic rhetoric during crisis events as a way of gaining and sustaining legitimacy and credibility. In this study we explore whether the same pattern can be seen at the European level by examining the European Commission during the financial and eurozone crisis. The main findings of the study demonstrate the opposite; that is, as the crisis got worse and as member states got increasingly engaged in its management, the Commission’s rhetoric became less charismatic.
Read the full article here.