Interest Groups & Advocacy

, Volume 3, Issue 2, pp 188–201 | Cite as

Identifying frames: A comparison of research methods

  • Frida Boräng
  • Rainer Eising
  • Heike Klüver
  • Christine Mahoney
  • Daniel Naurin
  • Daniel Rasch
  • Patrycja Rozbicka
Original Article


Framing plays an important role in public policy. Interest groups strategically highlight some aspects of a policy proposal while downplaying others in order to steer the policy debate in a favorable direction. Despite the importance of framing, we still know relatively little about the framing strategies of interest groups due to methodological difficulties that have prevented scholars from systematically studying interest group framing across a large number of interest groups and multiple policy debates. This article therefore provides an overview of three novel research methods that allow researchers to systematically measure interest group frames. More specifically, this article introduces a word-based quantitative text analysis technique, a manual, computer-assisted content analysis approach and face-to-face interviews designed to systematically identify interest group frames. The results generated by all three techniques are compared on the basis of a case study of interest group framing in an environmental policy debate in the European Union.


European Union framing interest groups interviews text analysis INTEREURO 


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Copyright information

© Macmillan Publishers Ltd 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Frida Boräng
    • 1
  • Rainer Eising
    • 2
  • Heike Klüver
    • 3
  • Christine Mahoney
    • 4
  • Daniel Naurin
    • 1
  • Daniel Rasch
    • 2
  • Patrycja Rozbicka
    • 2
  1. 1.Centre for European Research and Department of Political ScienceUniversity of GothenburgGothenburgSweden
  2. 2.Faculty of Social Science, Ruhr University BochumBochumGermany
  3. 3.Bamberg Graduate School of Social Sciences, University of BambergBambergGermany
  4. 4.Woodrow Wilson Department of PoliticsFrank Batten School of Leadership & Public Policy, University of VirginiaCharlottesvilleUSA

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