Media Freedom and the Institutional Underpinnings of Political Knowledge

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Authors Martijn Schoonvelde
Paper Category
Paper Abstract Recent empirical work in the study of political knowledge finds that voters'€™ knowledge of politics is not just a function of their individual characteristics but also depends on the supply of information from their "€˜information environment"€™. Yet this literature leaves unaddressed the question of what exactly constitutes the information environ- ment. This paper aims to fill this void. It first argues that the relationship between a government and the media impacts the information that is available to voters. Using multilevel (random intercept and random coefficient) statistical models applied to data on 22 countries, it then finds that less government interference with the media (i) positively affects voter learning, and (ii) moderates the individual-level effect of education on learning.
Date of publication 2014
Code Programming Language R

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