Boko Haram Fear and Funding Report - Citizen Research Centre
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Boko Haram Fear and Funding Report

We used Crimson Hexagon to answer three key questions of the social media conversation in Nigeria regarding Boko Haram:

  • What issues of social concern are Nigerians talking about on social media?
  • How has the level of fear risen over the years?
  • How do people that are active on social media in Nigeria think Boko Haram is funded?

Our research timelines were January 2009 to November 2015

SOCIAL CONCERNS

We identified areas of socio-economic concern to Nigerians, and then identified and analysed 1,060,647,786 relevant social media posts coming out of Nigeria between January 2009 and November 2015. Note that corruption tends to have a low level of mention on social media in countries where it is endemic. Note also that addiction refers to drug and alcohol addiction and related concerns. We found that the breakdown of concerns expressed on social media over this time frame was as follows:

THE RISE OF FEAR

In looking at ‘Threat’ more closely, we found dramatic change over time. Threat here refers to threat to life or property – largely as a result of (but not limited to) Boko Haram activity. In the years preceding Boko Haram’s increased level of activity (July 2010 to December 2013), we found Threat levels to be low to the point of insignificance. Throughout the period below, Threat comprised less than 1% of the total conversation on social media in Nigeria:

Once Boko Haram became more active, this level increased dramatically. The graph below shows how Threat, between January 2014 and October 2015, grew to comprise fully 22% of the total Nigerian social media conversation on topics of socio-economic/ social interest. This is by far the greatest single contributor to the national conversation around socio economic issues in this timeframe.

FUNDING OF BOKO HARAM

Turning our attention to Funding of Boko Haram, we identified 47 205 English posts emanating from Nigeria relating to the funding of Boko Haram over the time frame. It’s very important to note that this data was almost exclusively drawn from the time frame before President Buhari came to power. As such, the results represent people feelings about the old, rather than the new administration. In analysing this data set we found the following – given that ‘wealthy Nigerians’ inevitably refers to men of power, fully 54% of all Nigerian social media opinion points the finger at various levels of government or official power.

TIMELINES 2011-2015

In the timelines below we draw on tweets and news articles to explain spikes in volume in the discussion around Boko Haram funding. This to illustrate perceptions expressed on social media year by year.

FUNDING OF BOKO HARAM 2011

FUNDING OF BOKO HARAM 2012

FUNDING OF BOKO HARAM 2013

FUNDING OF BOKO HARAM 2014 (NOTE THE RISE IN VOLUME)

FUNDING OF BOKO HARAM 2015 (NOTE THE RISE IN VOLUME)

ABOUT THE CITIZEN RESEARCH CENTRE

The Citizen Research Centre is an organisation dedicated to investigating our societies and providing accurate, meaningful data that can be used to effect change – through knowledge, understanding of ourselves and ‘the other’ and through policy.

We describe what we do as social research. This is research done in order to improve and expand on our knowledge of the world by providing decision makers in social policy and intervention projects with the best data possible.

We run primary face-to-face research – both quantitative and qualitative – in 54 countries in Africa and the Middle East. Click here for a list of countries in which we run face-to-face research.

We run analytic research on social media globally through our partnership with Crimson Hexagon, arguably the best social media analysis platform in the world. This and other reports are generated through mining and reporting on our social media data base, which currently holds almost 1 trillion pieces of social media data.

We are committed to providing research on Citizens, and also research for Citizens – that reflect their own views back to them through social media analytics. The nature of social media analysis is such that any topic can be rigorously explored. If you would like to purchase in depth reporting on this or any other topic, please contact us

[email protected]

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