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Online Versus Offline: Which Networks Spur Protests?

Niklas Potrafke and Felix Roesel

No 9969, CESifo Working Paper Series from CESifo

Abstract: Does social media or offline social cohesion overcome collective action problems more effectively when both types of networks are prevalent? We investigate non-violent protests against a place-based economic reform in Austria—a country where one in two citizens uses Facebook but also one in two citizens is a member of a local club or civic organization. Our results show that protests spread more in places with strong offline networks as measured by real-life networks like village, folklore, or dialect clubs. We do not find that social media penetration intensifies local protests, a finding corroborated by microdata.

Keywords: online and offline networks; social media; social cohesion; civic organizations; social capital; protest; economic reform; populism (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D71 D72 Z20 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cdm, nep-net, nep-pay and nep-soc
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:ces:ceswps:_9969

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