Professor to study link between Pakistani media use and beliefs on violence


To what extent does media use among Pakistanis affect beliefs on Islamist violence? 

University of Akron political science professor Karl Kaltenthaler is the principal investigator on a research project that will attempt to answer this question and more. 

The 20-month, $276,000 grant, funded by the U.S. Department of State, will provide insight into the relationship between media consumption in Pakistan and beliefs about the legitimacy of Islamist violence. Kaltenthaler and his team will conduct a national survey of 6,000 Pakistanis for the project, "Pakistani Media and Muslim Communities: Identifying and Supporting Critical Thinking."

“The research into Pakistani attitudes toward violence and extremism is a priority for the community that studies terrorism and threats to the United States because Pakistan has been such an incubator and haven forterrorist groups with anti-American agendas,” says Kaltenthaler. “It is crucial to understand what factors influence the Pakistani public’s attitudes toward such groups and the violence they commit because the public can determine what the Pakistani government does to curb such groups and the public also serves as a potential source of logistical support and recruits for the extremist groups.”

Kaltenthaler expects to announce the results of the study in September 2014.

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