The Political Sociology (PolSoc) Research Group’s mission is to improve the understanding of the complex interplay between society and politics. We conduct research of highest quality within the fields of political behavior, political communication, democracy, citizenship, civil society, public opinion, and attitude formation. We work with state-of-the-art methods within these fields, contributing to their understanding and development. Our work has broad scientific and societal relevance in Denmark and beyond as it sheds light on fundamental questions about the workings and well-functioning of democratic politics.
The research field of political participation and citizenship is the foundation of the political sociology research group. Historically, members of the group have been in charge of all encompassing, country-wide studies of political participation / citizenship in Denmark conducted since 1979, and has contributed to disseminate the citizenship approach from its origins in the Scandinavian Power and Democracy studies to the European (e.g. European Social Survey) as well as the global mainstream (e.g. International Social Survey Programme).
The research group pays particular attention to electoral behavior in order to deepen our understanding of democratic politics. Which parties do we vote for and why? How do the voters evaluate the candidates? How does the election campaign affect voters’ perceptions? And how do politicians connect to voters? Members of the research group have participated in the Danish Election Project since 1979. The group also contributes to comparative research projects on in this area, such as the Comparative Campaign Dynamics Dataset and the European NUTS-Level Election Dataset.
The research group employs classic and contemporary public opinion theories from political science, sociology, and psychology to shed light on why the public thinks the way it does. We explore public opinion towards various issues, and we study cross-national differences and change in public opinion over time. The group’s research also engages with the study of political communication, focusing on the ways politicians communicate and the channels they use to get their messages to the voters.