Welcome to the project website of the Antwerp-Zurich research collaboration

The campaigns for the 2016 U.S. presidential election and the U.K. vote to leave the European Union ("Brexit") have increased the discussion about the potential influence of online disinformation. Since then, several reports and studies deal with questions around disinformation and cover the problem from different perspectives. Yet, empirical evidence regarding the rise of online disinformation and its effect on society is inconclusive, and little is known about the situation outside the U.S.

The project "From Uninformed to Disinformed Citizens? - Comparing Western Information Environments" aims to assess the extent of online disinformation (“fake news”) in Western Europe compared to the U.S. We aim to find out which actors spread false information, how disinformation is consumed and perceived, and which societal groups are most susceptible to being affected by it.

Our international team based at the universities of Zurich and Antwerp analyzes the problem in six countries (Switzerland, Belgium, France, Germany, the U.K., and the U.S.) from several perspectives.

With this website we want to share our findings of the project. Therefore, we constantly update the activities undertaken as well as the articles published in connection with this project on online disinformation.

The project is funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation (http://www.snf.ch/en) and the Research Foundation - Flanders (https://www.fwo.be/en/). It further is endorsed by the Digital Society Initiative of the University of Zurich (www.dsi.uzh.ch).