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Mobile Broadband Internet and Confidence in Government

January 20, 2021




Event Replay

Disclaimer: The views expressed by panelists are their own and do not represent the position of the World Bank

Presentation by Sergei Guriev “3G Internet and Confidence in Government”

  • How does mobile broadband internet affect the approval of the government? Using Gallup World Poll surveys of 840,537 individuals from 2,232 subnational regions in 116 countries from 2008 to 2017 and the global expansion of 3G mobile networks, the results show that, on average, an increase in mobile broadband internet access reduces government approval. However, this effect is present only when the internet is not censored, and it is stronger when the traditional media are censored.

    3G helps expose actual corruption in government: revelations of the Panama Papers and other corruption incidents translate into higher perceptions of corruption in regions covered by 3G networks. Voter disillusionment had electoral implications: in Europe, 3G expansion led to lower vote shares for incumbent parties and higher vote shares for the antiestablishment populist opposition.

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    Sergei Guriev

    Professor and Scientific Director of the Master and PhD programmes in Economics, Sciences Po

    Sergei Guriev is the Scientific Director of Sciences Po's Master's and PhD programmes in economics. He is a Research Fellow at the Center for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) and member of the Executive Committee of the International Economic Association. In 2016-19, he served as the Chief Economist at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. Dr. Guriev’s research interests include contract theory, corporate governance, political economics and labor mobility. He has published in international refereed journals including American Economic Review, Journal of European Economic Association, Journal of Economic Perspectives and American Political Science Review.


    Daniel J. Boyce

    Practice Manager, Governance Global Practice, Europe and Central Asia, World Bank

    Daniel Boyce is the Practice Manager for Europe and Central Asia (ECA) in the World Bank’s Governance Global Practice. His unit covers 11 countries in Eastern Europe, South Caucasus and Central Asia. Previously he managed the financial management unit for Latin America and the Caribbean. Mr. Boyce also has a leadership role in regional initiatives related to Public Expenditure Management (PEMPAL) and Public Sector Accounting (PULSAR) and manages the World Bank Centre for Financial Reporting Reform (CFRR) in Vienna. He is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and holds a Masters and Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), where his graduate studies focused on Comparative Politics, Electoral Systems, and political influences on Fiscal Performance.


    Daniel Rogger

    Economist, Development Impact Evaluation Unit, World Bank

    Daniel Rogger is a Research Economist in the Impact Evaluation Unit at the World Bank. His areas of interest are political economy, and organizational and public economics. Dan’s research aims to understand how to build organizations that effectively deliver public services. He does large scale surveys and research in collaboration with civil service organizations across the world. Dan did his PhD in economics at University College London (UCL), his Masters in Economics at the University of Cambridge, and his undergraduate degree in economics at UCL.


  • DATE: January 20, 2021
  • TIME: 10-00 AM ETC
  • CHAIR: Asli Demirgüç-Kunt, Chief Economist, Europe and Central Asia, World Bank