Thematic analysis using the Schwartz values theory: exploring the use of values appeals in persuasive speech during COVID-19 in Australia

Linda Botterill, Niobe Lewis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The Schwartz theory of personal values has been used extensively, and almost exclusively quantitatively, by researchers to increase understanding of the impact of values on human behaviour. While it provides a well-tested methodology and common language, the approach has been limited by its reliance on survey work, in which the researcher asks participants questions of interest, and then correlates these with respondents’ self-reporting of their values. There is limited qualitative work that has drawn on the insights of the Schwartz theory. The main exception is based on a lexicon of values words derived from Schwartz’s work which has been used to identify dominant societal values across time. We are proposing that the Schwartz theory can also be used to analyse values appeals in persuasive speech. Using thematic analysis of an example of political persuasion, we illustrate how Schwartz’s values work can be further adapted for qualitative research.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalEuropean Political Science Review
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 10 Nov 2022

Cite this