Media Penetration and Economic Growth: Case Study of South Africa

Conference: The Barcelona Conference on Arts, Media & Culture (BAMC2022)
Title: Media Penetration and Economic Growth: Case Study of South Africa
Stream: Media Studies
Presentation Type: Oral Presentation
Aaron Tshidzumba, North West University, South Africa
Opeyemi Oladunjoye, North West University, South Africa


South Africa has the largest economy in Africa with a 4.9 percent growth rate as well as 46.4 percent in media penetration, the largest in sub-Saharan Africa. Media penetration has altered modes of communications and information dissemination between citizens, governments, and international economic relations through advanced development in digital technologies. Despite the problems of underdevelopment and imperfect markets which made developing countries susceptible to the drawbacks of the lack of information availability. As well as the challenges of poor equipment investment and infrastructure and underdeveloped media which made the consumers and citizens remain under-informed about economic activities and markets. It has been established in the literature that countries with more open economies tend to have higher media penetration rates while several studies have also examined and emphasized the relevance of media as an engine of growth in developed economies. Due to ever-increasing media and economic globalization, this study intends to advance knowledge on how either media penetration or economic growth influence each other in Africa, especially in South Africa. Given this, the study intends to investigate the impact of media penetration on economic growth in South Africa and determine the direction of causation between media penetration and economic growth in South Africa. Secondary data shall be sourced from the World Development Indicators (WDI) of the World Bank and data collected would be analyzed using econometrics techniques. The study will expand our understanding of how either media penetration or economic growth influences each other in South Africa.

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