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The research catalogue is an archive of ESRC-funded grants and outputs. Links, files and other content will no longer be maintained or updated after April 2014.

Media System, Political Context and Informed Citizenship: A Comparative Study

The overall objective of this study is to investigate what influences informed citizenship. It is based on a study of eight nations, in four continents, and focuses on the organisation of the media, what is reported, and on differences of political culture and context.

This study investigates whether market-driven media give greater prominence to celebrity and entertainment news than to politics compared with public service media. It will also investigate whether national differences in what is reported are related to what is known. For example, are Americans expert in celebrity news, Norwegians well versed in international news, and the Japanese especially informed about domestic politics?

This investigation will also explore whether differences between societies - for instance, in the degree of political partisanship, peoples’ perception of whether government is effective, relative investment in education, and degree of economic inequality - affect the level of news consumption, and whether this in turn influences knowledge of public affairs.

Co-funded by the ERSRC, and seven other agencies ranging from the Japanese Research Council to Sky Italia, the study is based on a quantitative study of news and representative national surveys.