Document Type

Conference Paper


Available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike 4.0 International Licence

Publication Details

DiscourseNet International Congress 1 - Discourse: Language, Society, Critique University of Bremen, Germany 24-26 September 2015. Panel 1B: Discourse and the Political Economy


We focus on the methods used in analyzing broadcast interviews with economists on Morning Ireland, a prominent Irish radio news programme. Few would doubt that economists have taken a prominent role as experts on policy issues (Carrick-Hagenbarth and Epstein 2012, p.45) and some contend that no other social science discipline has gained such prominence (Schneider and Kirchgassner 2009, p.324). This paper comes from a larger research project, which uses a tailored methodological approach, incorporating a number of analytical methods. Keller (2011, p.63) has argued that a tailored methodological approach is often required to give special consideration to the ‘knowledge side’ of discourse (Keller, 2011, p. 63). In this broader methodological approach, we draw on corpus linguistic techniques to identify features of the overall corpus and help identify passages for closer analysis (McEnery & Hardie, 2011), on methods of media interactional analysis (for example, Hutchby, 2011) to understand the context of radio broadcast interviews, and approaches in discursive psychology (Edley and Wetherell, 1997; Potter and Wetherell, 1987) to tackle issues of expert identity construction. This paper will focus on an element of this overall methodology, namely the issues of expert identity construction, and more specifically, how an expert identity is legitimised through their discourse. In common with Critical Discourse Analytical approaches (Fairclough, 2010; Wodak & Meyer, 2009) we find a critical sociological understanding of context useful, but also find it essential to understand the world of economists and to be informed by their profession’s peculiarities (Fourcade, 2009). .