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The Impact of the internet on youth in Qatar


Dr. Mohammad Massalha

Project description

The project's objective is to investigate the Internet & ICT impact on Arab Societies which are undergoing an accelerated transition from traditional to modern (even postmodern) societies or alternatively towards a unique new model of "Modern Arab societies".  Especially emphasizing the intergenerational ICT Gap it will study the downfall of adult authority, debilitation of tradition and the value crisis.

The research project will consist of an empirical research: a quantitative and qualitative research among two parallel Arab societies: The Arab population in Qatar and Palestinian community in Israel and a third comparative group of a non Arab society in Qatar.  The research will concentrate in characterizing uses of ICT, opinions & attitudes on religion, family, tradition, politics, "western culture" and new technologies.

The research will be complemented with a review of State of the Art literature on the impact of internet on Arab and Western societies. A synthesis of the empirical research and literature review will enable to draw conclusions on the Internet's & ICT impact and to formulate recommendations and guidelines for intervention.

The outcomes will help Qatar accomplish its aim to fully exploit ICT and become a world-leading knowledge-based society removing barriers to its adoption, tackle is negative effects and leveraging its empowering potential. In case the empirical research corroborates our pre-assumption of an intervention need, recommendations and guidelines for intervention will be formulated with a special focus on closing the Intergenerational ICT gap in Qatar. The designed model of intervention will be tested in the framework of intergenerational collaborative pilot projects that would strive to ease the intergenerational clash by engaging youngsters and adults in conjunct activities with shared interest for both age groups involving ICT. Integrating the conclusions of the pilots a final model of intervention for closing the intergenerational ICT gap in Qatar will be available for policy makers.

Another valuable and practical output of the research would be: Qatar's Internet Usage Resource- A source of rich & detailed information on Qatar's population Internet usage characteristics. It will provide information on variables such as use of e-services, content view, favorite sites, communication habits and more.