Ruling (by) the Airwaves: The Effect of Radio Programming on Attitudes toward Government in South Sudan

This project has been canceled. Radio provides governmental and non-governmental organizations with the means to cheaply communicate with large populations. Moreover, in some countries – and South Sudan in particular – listening to the radio remains a primary form of media consumption for a large portion of the country, especially in rural areas that are difficult to reach by other means. If popular radio programs have the ability to influence knowledge, attitudes, or behavior, they could therefore provide an indispensable tool for shaping how people perceive and interact with the state, particularly in new states and other transitional contexts. The key question then is whether radio programs can indeed shape politically relevant attitudes, knowledge, or behavior in meaningful ways. The goal of this pilot project is to strengthen the design of a planned experiment that will allow us to answer this question. The experiment will use a randomized-encouragement design to examine the impact of Sawa Shabab, a radio drama for youth in South Sudan, funded by the United States Institute of Peace (USIP) and produced locally by Free Voice South Sudan.

RFP Cycle:
South Sudan
  • Nina McMurry
  • Chad Hazlett
  • Full project