Local Media and Epidemics: Evidence from the Ebola outbreak in Guinea

Research output: Working paper/PreprintPreprint


Local media struggles financially, yet policy-makers insist on its importance. Does local media matter? If so, why? Is it more relevant information, ethno-linguistic belonging, or, locality, helping coordinate behavior? I examine this in a high-stakes context, the Ebola epidemic in Guinea. I exploit quasi-random variation in access to distinct media outlets and the timing of a public-health campaign on community radio. I find that 13% of Ebola cases would have been prevented if places with access to neighboring community radio stations had their own. This is driven by radio stations' locality, not ethno-linguistic boundaries, and by coordination in socially-sanctioned behaviors.
Original languageEnglish
StatePublished - Oct 2022


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