Publications

2005
Tamir Sheafer and Gideon Rahat. 2005. “The Personalization(s) of Politics: Israel 1949-2003.” In Conference Papers – International Communication Association, Pp. 1 -23 . Publisher's Version Abstract
This study addresses one central problem and two major controversies in the study of political personalization. The central problem is that of mixing different types of political personalization. This research suggests a typology that distinguishes between various types of political personalization: institutional, media and behavioral. The first controversy concerns the very occurrence of the process of personalization. This study identifies personalization(s) in Israel in all three realms: institutional personalization, expressed in the democratization of candidate selection methods; personalization in the media, expressed in an increase in the focus of media coverage on individual politicians and a decrease in focusing on political parties; and personalization in the behavior of politicians, expressed in an increase in the share of legislation that is initiated through private member bills. The second controversy concerns the causal relationship between the different types of person
2004
Tamir Sheafer. 2004. “Charismatic Skill, Media Legitimacy and Electoral Success.” Conference Papers – International Communication Association, Pp. 1. Publisher's Version Abstract
There is growing interest in how much a political candidates' media skills, sometimes referred to as 'charisma', are critical to their electoral success and political survival. According to one hypothesis, the effects of media skills might be so strong, that actors who do not posses media skills quickly vanish from the political arena. However, while many believe that media skills are an important aspect of getting elected, few have actually tried to measure their effects. Part of the reluctance no doubt stems from methodological difficulties in measuring them. In this study we look more directly at the media skills that are likely to play an important role in the electoral competition and suggest a new methodology for measuring such skills. Findings are presented that show that media skills can have an important impact on long-term electoral success of Israeli members of the Knesset. ..PAT.-Unpublished Manuscript [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
Tamir Sheafer and Gadi Wolfsfeld. 2004. “Production Assets, News Opportunities, and Publicity for Legislators: A Study of Israeli Knesset Members.” Legislative Studies Quarterly, Pp. 611. Publisher's Version Abstract
This study proposes a number of theoretical and methodological innovations in an attempt to better understand how legislators compete for media coverage. We make a distinction between those variables that determine the potential newsworthiness of a legislature (production assets) and those that are related to the political and media environment in which the legislators operate (news opportunities). We then put forth five hypotheses and test them by examining the political standing, charismatic communication skills, and radio exposure of 54 members of the Israeli Knesset. The results confirm that political standing and charismatic communication skills are important predictors of media exposure and that the relative importance of these factors changes during different political seasons.
Tamir Sheafer and Gadi Wolfsfeld. 2004. “Production Assets, News Opportunities, and Publicity for Legislators: A Study of lsraell Knesset Members.” Legislative Studies Quarterly, 29, Pp. 611 - 630. Publisher's Version Abstract
The article focuses on exposure of 54 members of the Israeli Knesset, competing for media coverage. Tangibly, political power provides legislators with the ability to create newsworthy events, access to important and interesting information, and easy access to reporters, who routinely cover the offices the powerful legislators hold. Other variables that have been linked to leaders' publicity can be categorized under the heading of "media skills." The studies demonstrate that media coverage of legislators is influenced by more "macro" variables, such as the political and media cultures in which the competition over publicity is taking place and changes in the political environment.
2002
Gadi Wolfsfeld and Tamir Sheafer. 2002. “Riding the Wave: The Competition over Media Exposure during Political Waves.” In Conference Papers – American Political Science Association, Pp. 1. Publisher's Version Abstract
This study looks at the competition over news exposure during political waves. Political waves are sudden and significant changes in the political environment that are characterized by a substantial increase in the amount of public attention centered on a political issue or event. Four research questions are raised in an attempt to better understand this issue from the perspective of political actors. 1) Which political actors are in the best position to initiate political waves? 2) Which actors are in the best position to exploit political waves? 3) What types of waves provide the greatest news opportunities for political actors? 4) Which types of actors are in the best position to exploit different types of political waves? [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
2001
The analysis of media agenda and the multistages of four Israeli elections show a relation between real world indicators and the media coverage. The result also shows that the public opinion and voting had media influence than the president's performance during elections.
Tested on 95 Israeli MKs.