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Edutainment Radio, Women's Status and Primary School Participation: Evidence from Cambodia

Author

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  • Cheung, Maria

    () (Dept. of Economics, Stockholm University)

Abstract

This paper investigates whether exposure to "edutainment" (education - entertainment) radio leads to improved women's status and primary school participation. Specifically, I examine a popular radio station focusing on gender issues in Cambodia. To identify the effect, I exploit plausible exogenous variation in over-the-air signal strength between radio transmitters and villages within a district, as well as the variation across time and space in exposure. Using individual data, both approaches show that the exposure had a significant impact on behavior by raising the women's decision-making power within the household and increasing children's primary school attendance. The latter impact is also reflected by higher primary school enrollment three years after exposure. The impact was found in both poor and rural house- holds confirming that radio is an effective vehicle to transmit information in the more marginalized areas. Suggestive evidence shows that the exposure also affected attitudes towards domestic violence and the prevalence of son preference which is a stepping stone towards changing socially constructed gender norms.

Suggested Citation

  • Cheung, Maria, 2012. "Edutainment Radio, Women's Status and Primary School Participation: Evidence from Cambodia," Research Papers in Economics 2012:5, Stockholm University, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:sunrpe:2012_0005
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    File URL: http://www2.ne.su.se/paper/wp12_05.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Maria Cheung & Maria Perrotta Berlin, 2015. "The Impact of a Food for Education Program on Schooling in Cambodia," Asia and the Pacific Policy Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 2(1), pages 44-57, January.
    2. Deon Filmer & Norbert Schady, 2008. "Getting Girls into School: Evidence from a Scholarship Program in Cambodia," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 56, pages 581-617.
    3. Stefano DellaVigna & Ethan Kaplan, 2007. "The Fox News Effect: Media Bias and Voting," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 122(3), pages 1187-1234.
    4. Matthew A. Gentzkow & Jesse M. Shapiro, 2004. "Media, Education and Anti-Americanism in the Muslim World," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 18(3), pages 117-133, Summer.
    5. Robert Jensen & Emily Oster, 2009. "The Power of TV: Cable Television and Women's Status in India," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 124(3), pages 1057-1094.
    6. Benjamin A. Olken, 2009. "Do Television and Radio Destroy Social Capital? Evidence from Indonesian Villages," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(4), pages 1-33, October.
    7. Eliana La Ferrara & Alberto Chong & Suzanne Duryea, 2012. "Soap Operas and Fertility: Evidence from Brazil," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 4(4), pages 1-31, October.
    8. Nancy Qian, 2008. "Missing Women and the Price of Tea in China: The Effect of Sex-Specific Earnings on Sex Imbalance," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 123(3), pages 1251-1285.
    9. Jakob Svensson & David Yanagizawa, 2009. "Getting Prices Right: The Impact of the Market Information Service in Uganda," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 7(2-3), pages 435-445, 04-05.
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    Cited by:

    1. Stefano DellaVigna & Eliana La Ferrara, 2015. "Economic and Social Impacts of the Media," NBER Working Papers 21360, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Eliana La Ferrara, 2016. "Mass Media And Social Change: Can We Use Television To Fight Poverty?," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 14(4), pages 791-827, August.
    3. Patrick Lubega & Frances Nakakawa & Gaia Narciso & Carol Newman & Cissy Kityo, 2017. "Inspiring women: Experimental evidence on sharing entrepreneurial skills in Uganda," Trinity Economics Papers tep2017, Trinity College Dublin, Department of Economics.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Radio exposure; information; gender; women's status; schooling; enrollment; attitude; behavior; edutainment; Cambodia;

    JEL classification:

    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness
    • I25 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Education and Economic Development
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination

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