IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

Mass media and public policy : global evidence from agricultural policies

  • Olper, Alessandro
  • Swinnen, Johan

Mass media play a crucial role in information distribution and in the political market and public policy making. Theory predicts that information provided by the mass media reflects the media's incentives to provide news to different groups in society and affects these groups'influence in policy making. The paper use data on agricultural policy from 69 countries spanning a wide range of development stages and media markets to test these predictions. The empirical results are consistent with theoretical hypotheses that public support for agriculture is affected by the mass media. In particular, an increase in media (television) diffusion is associated with policies that benefit the majority to a greater extent and is correlated with a reduction in agriculture taxation in poor countries and a reduction in the subsidization of agriculture in rich countries, ceteris paribus. The empirical results are consistent with the hypothesis that increased competition in commercial media reduces transfers to special interest groups and contributes to more efficient public policies.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 6362.

in new window

Date of creation: 01 Feb 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:6362
Contact details of provider: Postal:
1818 H Street, N.W., Washington, DC 20433

Phone: (202) 477-1234
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Olper, Alessandro & Swinnen, Johan, 2013. "Mass media and public policy : global evidence from agricultural policies," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6362, The World Bank.
  2. Stromberg, David, 2001. "Mass media and public policy," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(4-6), pages 652-663, May.
  3. Marks, Leonie A. & Kalaitzandonakes, Nicholas G. & Vickner, Steven S., 2003. "Evaluating Consumer Response to GM Foods: Some Methodological Considerations," CAFRI: Current Agriculture, Food and Resource Issues, Canadian Agricultural Economics Society, issue 04.
  4. David Roodman, 2009. "A Note on the Theme of Too Many Instruments," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 71(1), pages 135-158, 02.
  5. Simeon Djankov & Caralee McLiesh & Tatiana Nenova & Andrei Shleifer, . "Who Owns the Media?," Working Paper 19470, Harvard University OpenScholar.
  6. Besley, Timothy J. & Burgess, Robin, 2001. "The Political Economy of Government Responsiveness: Theory and Evidence from India," CEPR Discussion Papers 2721, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Anderson, Kym, 1993. "Lobbying Incentives and the Pattern of Protection in Rich and Poor Countries," CEPR Discussion Papers 789, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Romain Wacziarg & Karen Horn Welch, 2008. "Trade Liberalization and Growth: New Evidence," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 22(2), pages 187-231, June.
  9. Vigani, Mauro & Olper, Alessandro, 2013. "GMO standards, endogenous policy and the market for information," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 32-43.
  10. Oberholzer-Gee, Felix & Waldfogel, Joel, 2005. "Strength in Numbers: Group Size and Political Mobilization," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 48(1), pages 73-91, April.
  11. Patricia Kuzyk & Jill J. McCluskey, 2006. "The Political Economy of the Media: Coverage of the Lumber Tariff Dispute," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 29(5), pages 655-667, 05.
  12. Swinnen, Johan F.M., 2009. "Political Economy of Agricultural Distortions: The Literature to Date," Agricultural Distortions Working Paper 50308, World Bank.
  13. M Arellano & O Bover, 1990. "Another Look at the Instrumental Variable Estimation of Error-Components Models," CEP Discussion Papers dp0007, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  14. Olper, Alessandro & Raimondi, Valentina, 2009. "Constitutional Rules and Agricultural Policy Outcomes," Agricultural Distortions Working Paper 50304, World Bank.
  15. Simon P. Anderson & Stephen Coate, 2003. "Market Provision of Broadcasting: A Welfare Analysis," Virginia Economics Online Papers 358, University of Virginia, Department of Economics.
  16. Kynda R. Curtis & Jill J. McCluskey & Johan F.M. Swinnen, 2008. "Differences in global risk perceptions of biotechnology and the political economy of the media," International Journal of Global Environmental Issues, Inderscience Enterprises Ltd, vol. 8(1/2), pages 77-89.
  17. Anderson, Kym, 2009. "Five Decades of Distortions to Agricultural Incentives," Agricultural Distortions Working Paper 48742, World Bank.
  18. Blundell, R. & Bond, S., 1995. "Initial Conditions and Moment Restrictions in Dynamic Panel Data Models," Economics Papers 104, Economics Group, Nuffield College, University of Oxford.
  19. Margaret S. McMillan & Dani Rodrik, 2011. "Globalization, Structural Change and Productivity Growth," NBER Working Papers 17143, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Olper, Alessandro, 2007. "Land inequality, government ideology and agricultural protection," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 67-83, February.
  21. Gary S. Becker, 1983. "A Theory of Competition Among Pressure Groups for Political Influence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 98(3), pages 371-400.
  22. Olper, Alessandro & Raimondi, Valentina, 2013. "Electoral rules, forms of government and redistributive policy: Evidence from agriculture and food policies," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 141-158.
  23. Ritva Reinikka & Jakob Svensson, 2005. "Fighting Corruption to Improve Schooling: Evidence from a Newspaper Campaign in Uganda," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 3(2-3), pages 259-267, 04/05.
  24. Johan F. M. Swinnen & Jill McCluskey & Nathalie Francken, 2005. "Food safety, the media, and the information market," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 32(s1), pages 175-188, 01.
  25. De Gorter, Harry & Swinnen, Johan, 2002. "Political economy of agricultural policy," Handbook of Agricultural Economics, in: B. L. Gardner & G. C. Rausser (ed.), Handbook of Agricultural Economics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 36, pages 1893-1943 Elsevier.
  26. Assar Lindbeck & Jörgen Weibull, 1987. "Balanced-budget redistribution as the outcome of political competition," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 52(3), pages 273-297, January.
  27. Besley, Timothy & Burgess, Robin, 2001. "Political agency, government responsiveness and the role of the media," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(4-6), pages 629-640, May.
  28. Anthony Downs, 1957. "An Economic Theory of Political Action in a Democracy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 65, pages 135.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:6362. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Roula I. Yazigi)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.