Countering frames: how Warsaw and Budapest mayors communicated their international activity


This paper examines the Mayor of Budapest, Gergely Karácsony and Mayor of Warsaw Rafał Trzaskowski social media communication related to their international activity in the context of government-linked media bias. The paper’s research verifies the use of communication frames that prompt a given, desired interpretation and justification of mayors’ transborder engagement.
By exploring its communication aspect, the paper adds to a better understanding of local governments’ international activity. It also adds to the debate on the role of cities in drawing international public attention towards problems with the rule of law and the quality of democracy in Poland and Hungary.

Barber B., Gdyby burmistrzowie rządzili światem, transl. H. Jankowska i K. Makaruk, Muza, Warszawa 2014, [English version: If mayors ruled the world. Dysfunctional nations, Rising Cities 2013].

Bayer L., Mortkowiz S., Central Europe mayors pitch for EU cash to fight populism, Politico [online], 11 II 2020 [accessed: 11 III 2021], available online <>.

Bond R. M., Fariss C. J., Jones J. J., Kramer A. D. I., Marlow C., Settle J. E., Fowler J. H., A 61-million-person experiment in social influence and political mobilisation, “Nature” 2012, vol. 489 (7415).

Byrne C., Getting engaged? The relationship between traditional, new media and the electorate during the 2015 UK general election, Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism University of Oxford, Oxford 2015.

Czernich P., Awaria Czajki. TVP ilustruje zanieczyszczenia zdjęciem z 2015 r.,, 4 IX 2020 [accessed: 21 III 2021], available online: <,79cfc278>.

Dunai M., Hungary says to target tech giants over alleged manipulation of social media plat-forms, Reuters [online], 26 I 2021 [accessed: 18 IV 2021], available online: <>.

Entman R. M., Framing: towards clarification of a fractured paradigm, “Journal of Communication” 1993, vol. 43(4).

Fazekas Z. et al., Elite-public interaction on twitter: EU issue expansion in the campaign, “European Journal of Political Research” 2021, vol. 60, issue 2.

Franczak K., Analiza ramowania, [w:] Analiza dyskursu publicznego. Przegląd metod i perspektyw badawczych, red. M. Czyżewski, M. Otrocki, T. Piekot, J. Stachowiak,Wydawnictwo Akademickie Sedno, Warszawa 2017.

Gaub F. et al., Global trends to 2030 challenges and choices for Europe, European Strategy and Policy Analysis System, Brussels 2019, available online [accessed: 8 III 2021]: <>.

Gąbka A., List Trzaskowskiego do Brukseli. „Wbicie sztyletu w plecy polskiemu rządowi”, [online], 7 XII 2020 [accessed: 13 VI 2021], available online: <>.

Goffman E., Frame analysis. An essay on the organization of experience, Northeast University Press, Boston 1986.

Inotai E., Budapest Mayor: I’m not challenging Orban yet, Balkan Insight [online], 11 VII 2020 [accessed: 5 IV 2021], available online: <>.

Inotai E., Governing, not winning, seen greater test for Hungary’s united opposition, Balkan Insight [online], 24 III 2021 [accessed: 3 IV 2021], available online: <>.

Katz B., Nowak J., The new localism: How cities can thrive in the age of populism, Brookings Institution Press, Washington 2018.

Lindgren S., Digital media & society, Sage, London 2017.

Maćkiewicz J., Ramy interpretacyjne jako narzędzie badań medioznawczych, „Studia Medioznawcze” 2020, tom 21, nr 3 (82).

Newberry C., 36 Twitter stats all marketers need to know in 2021,, 3 II 2021 [accessed: 28 II 2021], available online: <>.

Newberry C., 47 Facebook stats that matter to marketers in 2021, [online], 11 I 2021 [accessed: 28 III 2021], available online: <>.

Niklewicz K., Retaking the cities: A plan for the centre-right, Wilfred Martens Centre for European Studies, Brussels 2020, available online [accessed: 7 iii 2021]: <>.

Niklewicz K., Communicating reform through social media: opportunities and risks, “e-Politikon” 2017, nr XXI.

Olender, A., „Prześcignęliśmy nawet rosyjską telewizję”. Badacz mechanizmów propagandy ocenia „Wiadomości” TVP,, 9 VII 2020 [accessed: 21 III 2021], available online: <,wiadomosci-tvp-w-czasie-kampanii-wyborczej-medioznawca-o-propagandzie#>.

Ozsvath S., Hungary’s Fidesz party seeks to conquer social media, DW [online], 6 II 2021 [accessed: 6 IV 2021], accessed online: <>.

Reese S. D., Prologue – framing public life: a bridging model for media research, [in:] Framing public life: perspectives on media and on our understanding of the social world, eds S. D. Reese, O. H. Gandy, A. E. Grant, Routledge, London 2001.

Scheufele D. A., Framing as a theory of media effects, “Journal of Communication”, March 1999, vol. 49, issue 1.

Schudson M., The News Media as political Institutions, “Annual Review of Political Science” 2002, vol. 5.

Sikorski A., Is the end near for Viktor Orbán?, Human Rights Foundation – [online], 25 III 2021 [accessed: 27 III 2021], available online: <>.

Stawiany J., „Wiadomości” o Trzaskowskim źle albo wcale, [online], 19 VI 2020 [accessed: 21 III 2021], available online: <,_wiadomosci_-tvp-o-rafale-trzaskowskim-tylko-negatywnie>.

Sunstein C. R., #republic, Princeton University Press, Princeton 2017.

Vass A., Coronavirus: Budapest Mayor denies PM Orbán’s claims about capital’s 100 billion plus, Hungary Today, 14 IX 2020 [accessed: 5 IV 2021], available online: <>.

Zalan E., Central Europe Mayors join in direct EU funds plea, “EUobserver” [online], 13 II 2020 [accessed: 11 III 2021], available online: <>.

Zielonka J., Is the EU doomed?, Polity Press, Cambridge 2014.

Zgut E., Orbán wants to further restrict the independent media. Hungary is a warning to Poland, Rule of Law, 23 II 2021 [accessed: 28 III 2021], available online: <>.

Opublikowane : 2021-10-22

Niklewicz, K. (2021). Countering frames: how Warsaw and Budapest mayors communicated their international activity. Sprawy Międzynarodowe, 74(1), 195-215.

Konrad Niklewicz
Marketing Department of the City of Warsaw  Polska