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Antonio Lambino's blog

Quote of the Week

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"Research on political participation has identified a number of deep-seated norms and values that are positively associated with the amount and quality of democratic engagement.  One of the most central of these is political efficacy, or the sense that one's participation can actually make a difference (internal efficacy) and that the political system would be responsive to this participation (external efficacy)... Although political efficacy is affected by a number of demographic, contextual, and cultural factors, the media plays an important role in its formation and expression."   

                                              Michael X. Delli Carpini (2004)*

Photo credit: Jim Roese photography

*Delli Carpini, M. X. (2004). Mediating Democratic Engagement: The Impact of Communications on Citizens' Involvement in Political and Civic Life. In L. L. Kaid (Ed.), Handbook of Political Communication Research (pp. 395-434). New York: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

A "Global" Economic Crisis? Mind the Frame.

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“Global problems require global solutions,” a newspaper editorial recently asserted in its analysis of the current economic crisis.  From a communication studies perspective, stressing a particular aspect of an issue – in this case, the global nature of the crisis -- is called “framing.”   To further one’s position, advocates frame an issue by emphasizing some aspects of the phenomenon and deemphasizing others.  Contrasting frames on economic issues have been ubiquitous in the media for some time.  Compare, for example, the ways in which The Economist and CNN’s Lou Dobbs Tonight interpret economic realities.  Given the current crisis, the framing battle is even more apparent.  Protectionists might prefer to focus on a country’s deteriorating local job market and claim that the most pressing need is for government to protect domestic employment or a “domestic jobs frame.”  In contrast, those who believe in free markets might argue that protectionist policies will lead to contracting national economies and that the solution is greater liberalization or a “free trade frame.”

M-Government: The Promise of Participation

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Internews Network and Internews Europe recently released a report entitled “The Promise of Ubiquity: Mobile as Media Platform in the Global South.”  According to the release, the report was commissioned “to help the media to understand the exciting potential, the incredible challenges and the perils of refusing to change.”  It’s an impressive volume, packed with multi-country stats and trends, future visions, and case studies from the Global South.  These cases include use of text messaging (SMS) for a news service in Sri Lanka, election monitoring in Nigeria, crop price distribution in Indonesia, and expert health consultations for the Philippine diaspora in the Gulf region.  An interesting discussion on the report here.

It's Not Propaganda, It's Effective Governance

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The School of Media and Public Affairs at George Washington University, supported by CommGAP, recently organized a roundtable on The Contribution of Government Communication Capacity to Achieving Good Governance Outcomes.  Participants included representatives from governments, international NGOs, academic institutions, and World Bank colleagues who specialize in public sector governance and development communication.  Discussions revolved around the ways in which the topic of government communication might be approached and how good practices might be shared globally.

BBC World Service Trust: "Sanglap" and "Story Story"

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CommGAP, in collaboration with the World Bank’s Demand for Good Governance Peer Learning Network and the World Bank Institute, organized a roundtable yesterday on “The Role of Media in Strengthening Governance.” Dr. Gerry Power, Director of Research & Knowledge Management at the BBC World Service Trust, presented examples from work done in Bangladesh, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone. World Bank colleagues Verena Fritz, Governance Specialist and a contributor to this blog, and Sahr Kpundeh, Senior Public Sector Specialist, served as discussant and chair, respectively. Participants included representatives from the media sector, civil society, and other international organizations.

Diasporas and the Demand for Good Governance

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Last week in Manila, Philippines, I attended an international conference on communication and diasporic communities entitled "Boundaries and Belongings: Transnationalism, Identity, and Communications." Hosted by the Ateneo de Manila University’s Department of Communication, the event featured research on diasporas around the world and the role of communication in their day-to-day lives.  Examples ranged from differences in the use of international and domestic news sources (e.g., newspapers and television news) among local and international students, to the roles of new information and communication technologies, such as blogs and webcams, in helping individuals living abroad maintain a sense of connectedness to their home countries, families, and friends.  As should be expected of an academic conference, both positive and negative arguments were raised regarding access to, use, and effects of these old and new technologies.

Taking Measure of a Bastion of Democracy

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In the birthplace of democracy will be discussed the strengthening of a bastion of democracy.  The 2008 Global Forum for Media Development (GFMD) will be held in Athens, Greece, next week and will draw hundreds of people from around the world who promote, study, and work in the med

Communication and Anti-Corruption: Day 3 (of 3)

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Vienna International Center, Austria -- The third and final day of the CommGAP-United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) communication and anti-corruption learning event featured the following topics: the role of communication in changing social norms and behavior that support corruption; the communicative dimensions of anti-corruption bodies; and a brainstorming session on the ways in which UNODC and CommGAP can support the global anti-corruption community of practice.

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