Charitable Giving in the Media

In 2019, the percentage of Americans who donated to charity was at an all-time low. To understand why, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation commissioned the Media Impact Project to analyze the narratives about charitable giving and philanthropy conveyed through mass media news and entertainment, as well as what types of… More

Immigration Stories Foster Inclusive Attitudes

In this second study with Define American we found that TV shows with nuanced immigrant characters and immigration storylines can shift attitudes and inspire people to real-life action — leading to more inclusive attitudes towards immigrants and opposition to criminalizing undocumented people. Viewers were also more likely to take certain… More

Studying Pop Culture’s Impact

We are excited to be part of an illustrious cohort of change makers who are recipients of 2020 grants from the advocacy organization The Pop Culture Collaborative. Our research team will develop a field-wide impact learning system: research, evaluation and learning tools to track and understand the pop culture field’s… More

Patient-Provider Interactions on Primetime TV

A new study co-authored by researchers at our Hollywood, Health & Society program (HH&S) suggests TV may influence viewers’ health-related knowledge, perceptions and behaviors by examining patient–provider interactions on the most popular primetime TV programs. Congratulations to HH&S and our Director of Research, Erica Rosenthal, for this enlightening study. Read… More

#iamAFRICA winners announced


We are thrilled to announce the winners of the #iamAFRICA Short Film Competition. Three films have been selected by our jury in addition to the Audience Favorite, who was selected by you. — “Eyelash” directed by Mpendulo Myeni from South Africa “Miracle” directed by Bongi Ndaba from South Africa “Who… More

NLC Internships

INTERNS WANTED If you love entertainment and are looking for experience studying its impact, we want to hear from you. The USC Annenberg Norman Lear Center is a research institution that studies and shapes the impact of entertainment and media on society. We are seeking interns to join our team… More

Josh Kun on “Double Vision: The Photography Of George Rodriguez”

Popular Music Project director Josh Kun edited and provided texts for Double Vision: The Photography Of George Rodriguez, the first career retrospective of legendary photographer and activist, George Rodriguez. Since the 1950s, Rodriguez has quietly documented multiple social worlds—in California and beyond—that have never before been displayed together, a rare mix… More

Quote of the Day: Johanna Blakley

“Without advertising money, social media platforms are unsustainable.” In a CBC news report, Lear Center managing director Johanna Blakley speaks about the wake up call online platforms are experiencing as metrics reveal users’ trust is on the decline. Tech giants could be forced to clean up the rampant online toxicity if… More