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Does Showing Poverty Affect Donations? (Basic Research: Working Paper No. 7)

August 13, 2018

This study investigates the relationship between poverty awareness and the willingness to redistribute income, using an incentivized lab experiment with a between‐subjects design. Participants watched one (randomly determined) film out of three possible films for a translation exercise. Those in the treatment condition watched a film about poverty in Singapore; the other two films served as a control condition. I find that the showing the lives of people in poverty affect preferences for redistribution, making the viewer more tolerant towards a government redistribution of income. This effect remains robust even when controlled for emotional or mood states. I find no conclusive evidence of the impact of showing poverty on the viewer's contributions to charity. Showing poverty appears to have a positive effect on donations, but this effect reduces to close to zero when controlling for emotional and mood states. The heterogeneity analysis indicates that the more the viewer likes the film, the more influence the images have on the donations of the participant.

Online and Offline: Academy of Sharing - Using Social Media to Build a Social Movement

April 30, 2016

Users of Twitter and other social media platforms connect with each other to build an Indonesian foundation committed to sharing, learning, and bridging gaps between the classroom and the professional world. Academy of Sharing is a 21st-century social movement that has spread to 23 Indonesian cities. The brand translates in the Indonesian language to Akademi Berbagi. Fittingly, given how it began, the words were truncated in the social media universe too, simply, Akber.Though some changes have been made to help Akber manage its growth and maintain quality, it is still driven by the same key principle – alternative access to free education by leading experts for whichever students want to learn in classes organized by volunteers, in the way Ainun Chomsun did when she, as Akber's founder but also first volunteer, assembled the details for her first copywriting class. Some 30,000 students have attended about 1,000 Akber classes, led by about 200 teachers assisted by about 200 volunteers.

Why Information Matters: A Foundation for Resilience

May 1, 2015

Embracing Change: The Critical Role of Information, a research project by the Internews' Center for Innovation & Learning, supported by the Rockefeller Foundation, combines Internews' longstanding effort to highlight the important role ofinformation with Rockefeller's groundbreaking work on resilience. The project focuses on three major aspects:- Building knowledge around the role of information in empowering communities to understand and adapt to different types of change: slow onset, long-term, and rapid onset / disruptive;- Identifying strategies and techniques for strengthening information ecosystems to support behavioral adaptation to disruptive change; and- Disseminating knowledge and principles to individuals, communities, the private sector, policymakers, and other partners so that they can incorporate healthy information ecosystems as a core element of their social resilience strategies.

Mapping Digital Media: Pakistan

July 1, 2013

The Mapping Digital Media project examines the global opportunities and risks created by the transition from traditional to digital media. Covering 60 countries, the project examines how these changes affect the core democratic service that any media system should provide: news about political, economic, and social affairs.Pakistan has long suffered from high inflation, led by soaring food prices, which has increased poverty levels. According to the United Nations' 2011 Human Development Report, half the population suffers deprivations of all types. Only half is literate. Even then there are only 12 million television sets (surely a desirable medium for those who cannot read)—one for every 14 people.This means a lot of communal watching of mostly state-owned channels of the Pakistan Television Corporation (PTV). At present, the only other terrestrial television channel is the privately owned ATV, in which PTV and the Pakistan Broadcasting Corporation are majority (80 percent) shareholders. The sameness is deafening.However, urban Pakistanis are getting richer and spending money on alternatives. Thus PTV has ceded ground to more than 20 privately owned broadcasters with 89 domestic and 26 foreign channels, with national television viewing split evenly between terrestrial on the one hand, and cable and satellite on the other.This proliferation of channels has enabled Pakistani media to wield more influence over politics and public discourse than ever before. With this growing influence comes, however, a corresponding increase in attempts by the government to control media outlets. Indeed, state coercion and increasing censorship are among the greatest pressures on the media industry.

Mapping Digital Media: Malaysia

June 1, 2013

The Mapping Digital Media project examines the global opportunities and risks created by the transition from traditional to digital media. Covering 60 countries, the project examines how these changes affect the core democratic service that any media system should provide: news about political, economic, and social affairs.Malaysia has had a torrid relationship with digital. Mahathir Mohamad, the former Malaysian prime minister, fell in love with it in the 1990s when he launched the Multimedia Super Corridor, a sort of East Asian Silicon Valley, to develop the local information and communications technology industry.Two out of three Malaysians regularly use the internet (even though large areas of the East Malaysian states of Sabah and Sarawak, where nearly a fifth of the population lives, pose logistical challenges regarding infrastructure) and a third of the population have a 3G mobile subscription. Broadband household penetration in the capital, Kuala Lumpur, is 112 percent because many citizens have both fixed and mobile accounts. Nearly half the population is on Facebook with an average of 233 friends each, the greatest proportion in the world, all on social networks for an average nine hours a week. And they still seem to find enough time to watch television for three and a half hours a day and to listen to the radio for three hours.The outlook is for an expansion of internet and mobile-based platforms for news, comment, social networking, activism, and entertainment. However, a change of government is probably a prerequisite for the kinds of changes that would usher in greater diversity in broadcast and print, such as regulatory independence, repeal of the Printing Presses and Publications Act, and the dismantling of monopolies, rules on cross ownership, and political parties' ownership of media companies.

Mapping Digital Media: Singapore

March 1, 2013

The Mapping Digital Media project examines the global opportunities and risks created by the transition from traditional to digital media. Covering 60 countries, the project examines how these changes affect the core democratic service that any media system should provide: news about political, economic, and social affairs.The city-state of Singapore, with its five million people, has fully embraced the technology and opportunities presented by digitization. Nearly nine out of ten households have broadband access. Mobile phone penetration is 150 percent (most are smartphones), and there are 340 TV and 46 local and foreign radio channels.However, the government—and the Singaporean people—are still highly sensitive to the belief that the stability of their multi-ethnic population (Chinese, Malays, Indians, and Eurasians) is fragile, stoked by the memory of two bloody race and religious clashes in the 1950s and 1960s. This has long shaped the role of the media as non-adversarial.So individuals, groups, and media professionals operate within a state-sanctioned sphere and observe what are called "OB markers" ("out of bounds" lines used in sports to denote an area beyond which play is not allowed). These are the boundaries of acceptable and permissible political public discussion, which opposition politicians view as a form of self-censorship. The government has recently acknowledged openly that those markers are shifting.Despite the advances that have been made in recent years, there is a need for further steps to encourage diversity in content across all media. In addition, though Singapore has escaped the decline in professional standards that has accompanied media liberalization in many other countries, more needs to be done to retain talent and to raise the standards and skills of the city-state's 70,000 media professionals, particularly as demand increases for new forms of content creation and distribution.

Mapping Digital Media: India

March 1, 2013

The Mapping Digital Media project examines the global opportunities and risks created by the transition from traditional to digital media. Covering 60 countries, the project examines how these changes affect the core democratic service that any media system should provide: news about political, economic, and social affairs.The United Nations pointed out in 2010 that more Indians have access to a mobile phone than to a toilet. There are over 800 million mobile connections, although the number of unique users (excluding inactive connections) is estimated at around 600 million. Together with the fact that 60 percent of all households have cable and satellite television, providing access to many of the 700-plus television channels licensed to broadcast, it becomes clear that in garrulous India, mass poverty and marginalization do not result in a perfect "digital divide." This, together with the fact that the public broadcaster's prime terrestrial channel, DD National, covers about 92 percent of the 1.2 billion-plus population, clearly suggests that the users of digital technologies in India include many of the 300 million still below the official poverty line.In the case of the digital switchover, it is broadly in this area of public interest that most attention needs to be focused, whether it be in the area of greater accountability and autonomy of the state broadcaster, the governance of private media infrastructure, transparency and equity in licensing criteria and in mechanisms of allocating resources, and compliance with global standards of professional journalism. These values will go some way toward giving India a plurality of voices and media outlets that would properly reflect what may be the most diverse social and political landscape on the planet.

Mapping Digital Media: Thailand

May 31, 2011

Analyzes trends in Thailand's digital media and media consumption, including the state of independent public media, Internet use, the effects of digitization on journalism, the role of political turmoil in the media environment, and regulatory issues.

Journalism, News, and Information; Media Access and Policy

Southeast Asian Media: Patterns of Production and Consumption

January 26, 2010

Presents findings from a survey of national media in ten countries, including the use of, restrictions on, and political influence on television, radio, print, and online media; cell phones and other telecommunications; and independent journalism.

Journalism, News, and Information

Mapping Digital Media: Indonesia

March 1, 2004

The Mapping Digital Media project examines the global opportunities and risks created by the transition from traditional to digital media. Covering 60 countries, the project examines how these changes affect the core democratic service that any media system should provide: news about political, economic, and social affairs.The emergence of digital media in Indonesia coincided with the country's transition to democracy beginning in 1998. In some ways, digitization has catalyzed the development of diverse and independent media.Market reforms in favor of liberalization have gone hand in hand with convergence and proliferation to produce a radical increase in the number of media outlets. The number of national television channels has doubled since 1998; commercial radio stations have tripled; and the number of print newspapers has more than quadrupled. This has occurred alongside and in tandem with a rapidly growing online news sector populated by a mixed ecology of established brands and new entrants.In other ways, however, digitization has merely helped to shift the locus of concentrated power from the state to an increasingly consolidated media elite. Despite the growing number of outlets, new entrants in conventional sectors have been rare and have been hampered by policies that have tended to favor commercial incumbents.

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