NORMS, NARRATIVES AND IDENTITIES: TESTING THE EFFECT OF NARRATIVE FORM AND SOCIAL NORM DEVELOPMENT ON INDIVIDUALS' ATTITUDES, BELIEFS, AND BEHAVIOURS

The research team are heading to urban Nigeria to investigate how packaging information in a narrative format affects attitudinal and behavioural change.

OUR AIMS

Is mass narrative communication simply a vehicle for disseminating useful information, or do narrative and social channels contribute to behavioural changes observed? The research team are heading to urban Nigeria to explore this research question by investigating:

  1. Whether information packaged in the form of a narrative is more effeciently consumed and therefore leads to changes in behaviour.
  2. Whether social inclusion is best promoted by making people feel empowered to take action or by increasing their empathy?
  3. Whether information consumed alongside others creates shared expectations of new social norms that shift behaviour.

In collaboration with BBC Media Action, this project aims to investigate the dynamics of implicit and explicit attitudes and behaviours around disability.

ABOUT THE PROJECT

There is a substantial body of evidence documenting significant impacts of narrative communication on individual behaviour (Bernard et al., 2014; DellaVigna and La Ferrara 2015; Vogt et al., 2016), however, as increasing levels of public resources are invested in the policy tool, it is important to understand the basic pathways through which they work.

The use of mass narrative communication such as soap operas and films for social and developmental purposes has proliferated in the last five decades. The examples are legion and many have been experimentally or quasi-experimentally evaluated. The question this research project asks is 'is mass narrative communication simply a vehicle for disseminating useful information, or do narrative and social channels contribute independently as mechanisms toward attitudinal and behavioural change?"

PROJECT DETAILS

Project timeline
January 2019 - September 2020
 

Associations

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