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China's effect on attitudes towards aid in New Zealand

Last registered on November 20, 2019


Trial Information

General Information

China's effect on attitudes towards aid in New Zealand
Initial registration date
November 18, 2019

Initial registration date is when the trial was registered.

It corresponds to when the registration was submitted to the Registry to be reviewed for publication.

First published
November 20, 2019, 2:57 PM EST

First published corresponds to when the trial was first made public on the Registry after being reviewed.



Primary Investigator

The Australian National University

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
The Australian National University

Additional Trial Information

In development
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
This survey experiment will study whether presenting a vignette on China’s rising aid presence in the Pacific changes views about aid policy in New Zealand (New Zealand is the second largest aid donor to the Pacific). Attitudes in the following areas will be tested: (a) attitudes on total New Zealand aid volume; (b) the Pacific focus of New Zealand's aid; and (c) the purpose of New Zealand's aid giving.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Hoy, Christopher and Terence Wood. 2019. "China's effect on attitudes towards aid in New Zealand." AEA RCT Registry. November 20.
Experimental Details


In addition to the control group, one information treatment will be provided to a randomly selected sub-set of participants in the survey experiment.

The treatment group will receive a factually-accurate vignette on China’s rise as an aid donor to the region, in which facts are accompanied by matter of fact commentary.
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
There are three main outcomes of interest. These are:
1) Desire for level of New Zealand's aid spending to be changed.
2) What the purpose of New Zealand's aid should be (helping developing countries or advancing New Zealand’s interests).
3) Whether New Zealand's aid to the Pacific should increase as a share of New Zealand's total aid spending.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
The effect of China’s increased aid presence in the Pacific on New Zealander’s views about aid will be evaluated via an online survey of a nationally representative (on age and gender) sample of the New Zealand population.
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
Randomisation was conducted using the survey firm’s software.
Randomization Unit
Was the treatment clustered?

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
Sample size: planned number of observations
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
Power calculations have been conducted to estimate the sample size required based upon the average effect size and treatment group size of similar studies on this topic (e.g. Hoy, Pryke & Wood (2019)). The minimum detectable effect size on the primary question of interest (Desire for level of aid spending to be changed) is around 8 percentage points (with power 0.8 and alpha 0.05) with a sample size of 600 individuals in each group.

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number
Analysis Plan

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Post Trial Information

Study Withdrawal

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Is the intervention completed?
Intervention Completion Date
November 29, 2019, 12:00 +00:00
Data Collection Complete
Data Collection Completion Date
November 29, 2023, 12:00 +00:00
Final Sample Size: Number of Clusters (Unit of Randomization)
Was attrition correlated with treatment status?
Final Sample Size: Total Number of Observations
1147, Individual
Final Sample Size (or Number of Clusters) by Treatment Arms
Control: 584 Treatment: 563
Reports, Papers & Other Materials

Relevant Paper(s)

China’s rise is ushering in a new era of geostrategic contestation involving foreign aid. In
many traditional OECD donors, aid policy is changing as a result. We report on a survey
experiment studying the impacts of rising Chinese aid on public opinion in traditional
donors. We randomly treated people with vignettes emphasising China’s rise as an aid
donor in the Pacific, a region of substantial geostrategic competition. We used a large,
nationally-representative sample of Australians (Australia is the largest donor to the
Pacific). As expected, treating participants reduced hostility to aid and increased support
for more aid focused on the Pacific. Counter to expectations, however, treatment reduced
support for using aid to advance Australian interests. These findings were largely replicated
in a separate experiment in New Zealand. Knowledge of Chinese competition changes support
for aid, but it does not increase support for using aid as a tool of geostrategy.
Wood, T., Hoy, C., & Pryke, J. (2020). The Effect of Geostrategic Competition on Public Attitudes to Aid. Journal of Experimental Political Science, 8(3), 285-295.

Reports & Other Materials