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Journal of Social Science Education
Volume 12, Number

© JSSE 2013

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I S S N 1 6 1 8 -5 2 9 3

Mehmet Fatih Yigit, Bulent Tarman

The Impact of Social Media on Globalization, Democratization and Participative
Citizenship*
It is crucial to increase the civic and political participation during the process of democratization and globalization. There are several effective ways of achieving it in our time. Social media and networking tools have been one of the most effective tools to direct political elections and social changes. In this study, researchers discuss how social media tools have been used in the process of democratization and globalization, where those initiatives were successful, how they affected civic and political participation, and what kinds of variables in social media are important and affect people's attitudes and behaviors in Iran, Syria and Egypt.
Keywords
Social media, citizenship, democratization, Middle East

1 Introduction

Today, globalization, democratization and participative citizenship are current debated phenomenon in all around the world as countries continue to develop more and more. The main reason of these topics' being discussed in the world is the increasing level of education in almost all societies.
According to the UNESCO (2006), the world’s average literacy rate for males is 84 % while it is 75% for females. Moreover, huge economic changes have taken place all around the world and both the developing and developed economies have become dependent on each other as a result. Apart from these changes, the notion of democracy that had already been adopted in Europe ages ago has started to spread all around the world, specifically to the Arab nations. The latest examples can be given from Syria and Lebanon where ordinary people started to think about having their voice within their governmental departments. Even though the desire for democratization and the process itself is not painless, the choices of masses have been in that line (Lipset and Lakin 2004).
Civic and political participation are the two important aspects of developed democracies. While civic participation is defined as the actions by individuals or groups to identify and address public concern issues (Civic Engagement 2012), political participation is defined as actions conducted voluntarily to influence elections or public policy
Mehmet Fatih Yigit, is a PhD candidate on Social
Studies Education and works as an International
Relations Specialist at Suleyman Sah University,
Istanbul Turkey. He holds an MEd in Educational
Leadership from University of Cincinnati and an MA in Educational Theory and Policy from Pennsylvania
State University. email: fatihyigit6@gmail.com
Bulent Tarman has been Associate Professor at
Konya Necmettin Erbakan University in Turkey. He also served as an independent external expert at
Turkish National Agency and evaluate Lifelong
Learning Projects. He holds a PhD, with an emphasis on social studies education, as well as a minor in
Comparative and International Education, from the
Pennsylvania State Univ. and a BA in history and an
MEd
in social studies education. email: btarman@gmail.com (Johnston 2012). It is crucial to increase the civic and political participation during the process of democratization and globalization. There are several effective ways of achieving it in our time. Social media and networking tools have been one of the most effective tools to direct political elections and social changes (Cook 2010; Marandi et al. 2010;
Shaheen 2008; Guobin 2010; Smelter and Keddy
2010).
In this study, researchers discuss how social media tools have been used in the process of democratization and globalization, where those initiatives were successful, how they affected civic and political participation, and what kinds of variables in social media are important and affect people's attitudes and behaviors. Authors, apart from focusing on the successful social media movements, argue about the failures…