Presidents and the Political Agenda Chapter uri icon


  • Abstract This article discusses the current state of scientific research on the president and the political agenda. It also points toward gaps and limitations in the literature and areas for future research. It starts by describing the presidents and general theories of agenda setting. Presidents must compete with a variety of influences if they want to focus systemic attention on their issue priorities. Their main paths for focusing systemic attention are through the mass media and making direct appeals to the public. Agenda setting is a critical element of presidential leadership. The presidential issue priorities may not be ripe for consideration due to constraints on the agenda space or the dominance of more pressing matters. There are many instances where the president is simply one of the players in a policy-making process that is always ongoing. It is stated that the American president is a significant actor in setting political agendas.

author list (cited authors)

  • Wood, B. D.

citation count

  • 2

complete list of authors

  • Wood, B Dan

editor list (cited editors)

  • Edwards, G. C., & Howell, W. G.

Book Title

  • The Oxford Handbook of the American Presidency

publication date

  • January 2009