Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Pew Global Attitudes Survey 2005

The Pew Research Center has recently released a 16-nation Global Attitudes Survey that gave America mixed reviews amid what still remains a very negative world view of U.S. policy. Among the many interesting findings of the survey, I would like to make the following observations:

1. India is the most pro-American nation in the survey sample. Almost three out of four (71%) Indians expressed favorable opinions of the U.S. The majority of Indians (63%) believe that U.S. policy considers the interests of other nations.

2. Opinions of the U.S. in Indonesia have improved significantly since 2003 (from only 15% in 2003 to 38% in 2005). This improvement is undoubtedly linked to the relief efforts conducted by the US following the Tsunami. Although the majority of Indonesians still hold negative views of the US, it is clear that US efforts to provide relief to Tsunami victims in that country have been of significant value.

3. Strong majorities in Indonesia (59%), India (63%), and China (53%) believe that U.S. foreign policy considers others' interests. Note that only 25% of Indonesians believed that to be the case in 2003. This is clearly a vote of confidence for U.S. humanitarian relief in the case of Indonesia and trade/globalization in the case of China and India.

4. Strong majorities in the surveyed countries of Western Europe and the Muslim World (except Indonesia) believe that U.S. foreign policy does NOT consider the interests of other nations. This is clearly an expression of distrust and frustration with U.S. efforts in Iraq and post 9-11 policies.

5. Favorable ratings of the US have been steadily slipping in both Canada and Britain. Although majorities there (59% and 55% respectively) still have positive views of the U.S., note that those ratings were much higher only five years ago (71% and 83% respectively in 2000).

6. Favorable ratings of the U.S. in Lebanon have improved since 2003 (from 27% in 2003 to 42% today). One can only speculate about the contribution of US pressure on Syria to this unexpected improvement. The survey also shows that Lebanon remains a very sectarian country with deep divisions along religious and ethnic lines.

7. Favorable ratings of the U.S. in Morocco have plunged from 77% only five years ago (2000) to a miserable 27% in 2004 (data for 2005 was not yet ready for publication). However, the Pew Research Center explains that preliminary results from Morocco suggest significant improvements in the U.S. image there.

8. Most surveyed Western European countries (except Poland) find the US to be too religious. All surveyed Muslim countries find the U.S. not to be religious enough. Americans (58%) agree with the assessment of Muslims on this issue.

9. Majorities in all surveyed nations, except Russia and Poland, believe that the problem with the U.S. is “mostly Bush”. Only in Poland and Russia (49% and 58% respectively) believe that the problem with the U.S. is “America in general”. Remember that the majority of Poles (56%) find the U.S. not to be religious enough. President Bush is very unpopular in all surveyed countries except in India where 54% of those surveyed view him favorably.

10. Strong majorities in all of the countries surveyed believe Americans are “Hardworking” and “Inventive”. Majorities also believe that Americans are “violent” and “Greedy”. In fact 70% of surveyed Americans think of themselves as “Greedy”. The French and Germans are the least likely to associate that term with Americans.

11. The majority of surveyed Canadians believe that Americans are “rude”, “violent”, “dishonest”, and “greedy”. But, they also find their neighbors to be “Hardworking” and “Inventive”.

12. France and Germany love each other more than they love themselves. 89% of the French think highly of Germans (they only gave themselves a 74% favorability rating), whereas 78% of the Germans think highly of the French (they only gave themselves a 64% favorability rating). Get a room you two!! :)

13. Most surveyed countries including Canada, Britain, and Russia expressed markedly higher favorability ratings for France and Germany than for the U.S. Majorities in the surveyed Muslim countries give markedly higher marks to Western Europe, Japan, and China than they do the U.S. Only India reserved its highest favorability rating (71%) for the U.S.

14. Of all the surveyed nations, Indians are the only ones who still view the US as the land of opportunity. Australia has become the land of opportunity for most Western Europeans and China and Japan have become attractive destinations for Pakistanis and Indonesians respectively.

15. The Chinese are very happy with the way things are going at home. 88% of Chinese rated their country favorably, which is possibly an endorsement of pro-growth strategies in China – also reflects high hopes among the Chinese regarding their economic and political future.

16. Majorities in the U.S., Turkey, and Russia believe that they are disliked by the rest of the world. Strong majorities in all other surveyed nations believe that they are liked.

Favorable Opinion of the U.S. (Click on image)

Source: The Pew Global Project Attitudes, June 23, 2005.


Blogger laurenbove said...

Perhaps the most interesting thing I've read in a long while. Thank you for taking the time to post that. I'm going to look at it again. I may even link to you tomorrow b/c I want everyone to read this.

I'm also freaking out about London and sad. Hope you and yours are well.


July 07, 2005


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