Skip to Main Navigation

The Entertaining Way to Behavioral Change : Fighting HIV with MTV (English)

This paper tests the effectiveness of an entertainment education television series, MTV Shuga, aimed at providing information and changing attitudes and behaviors related to HIV/AIDS. Using a simple model, the paper shows that “edutainment” can work through an individual or a social channel. This study is a randomized controlled trial conducted in urban Nigeria, where young viewers were exposed to MTV Shuga or a placebo television series. Among those exposed to MTV Shuga, the trial created additional variation in the social messages they received and the people with whom they watched the show. The study finds significant improvements in knowledge and attitudes toward HIV and risky sexual behavior. Treated subjects are twice as likely to get tested for HIV eight months after the intervention. The study also finds reductions in sexually transmitted diseases among women. These effects are stronger for viewers who reported being more involved with the narrative, consistent with the psychological underpinnings of edutainment. The trial’s experimental manipulations of the social norm component did not produce significantly different results from the main treatment. The individual effect of edutainment thus seems to have prevailed in the context of this study.


  • Author

    Banerjee,Abhijit, La Ferrara,Eliana, Orozco Olvera,Victor Hugo

  • Document Date


  • Document Type

    Policy Research Working Paper

  • Report Number


  • Volume No


  • Total Volume(s)


  • Country


  • Region

    The World Region,

  • Disclosure Date


  • Disclosure Status


  • Doc Name

    The Entertaining Way to Behavioral Change : Fighting HIV with MTV

  • Keywords

    risky sexual behavior; Development Impact Evaluation; marginal costs of distribution; female labor force participation; principal component analysis; self-report measure; risk of contamination; Sexually Transmitted Disease; hiv prevalence rate; randomized controlled trials; attitude towards woman; expansion of access; Learning and Innovation Credit; people with hiv; primary school teacher; availability of drug; risk of contagion; conditional cash transfer; economics research; access to condoms; hiv positive people; behavior change interventions; public works program; transmission of hiv; department of economics; absence of coordination; provision of information; standard deviation; hiv testing; sexual partner; hypothesis testing; experimental design; treatment group; aggregate index; opposite sex; new information; sexually active; standard error; young people; risky behavior; baseline survey; behavioral outcome; social network; simple model; empirical analysis; lagged dependent; individual level; peer group; development policy; household size; educational content; individual choice; time t; positive spillover; information provision; information campaign; summary statistic; negative sign; 0 hypothesis; high-risk behavior; observed change; second language; economics literature; model equation; new idea; individual characteristic; wealth index; several approaches; empirical work; aids curriculum; alternative possibility; negative behavior; role models; social pressure; private decisions; individual behavior; research design; independent thinking; age range; hiv education; robustness analysis; random selection; in school; education subsidy; geographic distribution; rwandan genocide; study group; take stock; community center; married man; local public; cluster level; random sample; impact analysis; attending school; research assistance; baseline data; young men; sexual transmission; small sample; missing data; community attitudes; several reasons; survey questions; school schedule; sexual intercourse; changing behavior; urine sample; individual question; weighted average; survey respondent; outcome measure; educational messages; sugar daddies; psychological factors; sampling method; socioeconomic status; community norms; unprotected sex; sectional result; external input; sexual partnership; changing attitude; safe behavior; aggregate outcome; individual variable; cultural resistance; relative price; individual effect; open access; smaller number; predictive power; Research Support; perceived risk; behavioral change; individual knowledge; descriptive statistic



Official version of document (may contain signatures, etc)

  • Official PDF
  • TXT*
  • Total Downloads** :
  • Download Stats
  • *The text version is uncorrected OCR text and is included solely to benefit users with slow connectivity.


Banerjee,Abhijit La Ferrara,Eliana Orozco Olvera,Victor Hugo

The Entertaining Way to Behavioral Change : Fighting HIV with MTV (English). Policy Research working paper,no. WPS 8998 Washington, D.C. : World Bank Group.