The bridging function of interpersonal communication in agenda-setting

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journal

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)856-867
Journal / PublicationJournalism & Mass Communication Quarterly
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1992
Externally publishedYes


This study concerns the agenda-setting effects of people's mediated and unmediated experiences with one social issue — drug abuse — during the fall of 1989. Like the 1987 Mutz study of unemployment, this study explores what kinds of information lead to whether a problem such as drug abuse is perceived as a personal or a social problem. We find, as Mutz did for the issue of unemployment, a unique “bridging” influence of interpersonal communication between personal and social perceptions of the salience of drug abuse, and we offer an explanation for why interpersonal communication has this influence, whereas personal experience and media exposure do not. © 1992, Association for Education in Journalism & Mass Communication. All rights reserved.