Does Social Media Promote Democracy? Some Empirical Evidence

27 Pages Posted: 28 Nov 2018

See all articles by Chandan Kumar Jha

Chandan Kumar Jha

Le Moyne College

Oasis Kodila-Tedika

University of Kinshasa - Department of Economics

Date Written: 2018

Abstract

This study explores the relationship between social media and democracy in a cross-section of over 125 countries around the world. We find the evidence of a strong, positive correlation between Facebook penetration (a proxy for social media) and democracy. We further show that the correlation between social media and democracy is stronger for low-income countries than high-income countries. Our lowest point estimates indicate that a one-standard deviation (about 18 percentage point) increase in Facebook penetration is associated with about 8-point (on a scale of 0-100) increase for the world sample and over 11 points improvement for low-income countries.

Keywords: Democracy; Information; Facebook; Internet; Social Media

JEL Classification: D72; D83; O1

Suggested Citation

Jha, Chandan Kumar and Kodila-Tedika, Oasis, Does Social Media Promote Democracy? Some Empirical Evidence (2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3277152 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3277152

Chandan Kumar Jha (Contact Author)

Le Moyne College ( email )

Syracuse, NY 13214
United States

Oasis Kodila-Tedika

University of Kinshasa - Department of Economics ( email )

Kinshasa
Democratic Republic of the Congo

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