უკან ხუთშაბათი | 17 აპრილი, 2008
Counting People Makes them Count | Richard Rose
Richard Rose, a renowned specialists in the field of Social Capital, is currently visiting Georgia to deliver trainings at CRRC. He offered a public lecture setting out the case for conducting surveys, and entitled "Counting People Helps Make People Count". Not that we needed convincing, but we still enjoyed the way the argument was set out.
As Rose argued, surveys give a direct voice to people, show how they are living, what they are thinking, and identifies both what the problems are and who has them. He contrasted this bottom -up approach with a top-down approach to policy, and suggested that it has a special place between journalism, which tells one-off stories and ethnography or anthropology, which tell complex stories that become difficult to generalize. Data, in other words, are the plural of anecdotes. A concrete example he offered was a survey conducted in Latvia, designed to focus on poverty among female pensioners. As survey results showed, this was a relatively minor problem, compared to child poverty -- an insight that can help to direct scarce resources.
However, there also can be a catch, when data is turned into a league table, since only one can ever be on top. All others can see themselves as losers, relatively speaking. Yet this realization does not need to invoke the particularism of Johann Gottfried Herder, who had argued that basically all comparison is disastrous. Instead, making progress is the relevant category. As Rose put it: "if you talk about league tables, the conversation is pessimistic. If you talk about making progress, you can focus on making changes". Little happiness lies in comparing oneself to Sweden, but tracking progress in overcoming destitution charts a concrete path to where one wants to go.
Packaged into the talk were many engaging tidbits: admonishments that typical poverty data is one-dimensional ("relative poverty as a curse of Fabian Socialism"); the observation that throughout the former socialist bloc answers to "do you feel freer than before?" remain quite sticky, in that the positive sea change is not forgotten; the curious observation that 58% of Turkish population appears worried about Christian missionaries; and that Russia after the collapse for a long time lacked the "why we are here" speech, something that in post-1945 Germany was easier to deliver. His curriculum vitae lists many of his relevant publications.
The overall outlook was quite optimistic, in that he saw extensive progress. Professor Rose is currently writing a book about Transition and After, which will reflect many of these themes. Currently he is offering a training course on designing Social Capital questionnaires. He also urged us to publish more results from our Data Initiative, which we will be doing over the next few weeks.
08.08.2015 | შაბათი
CRRC’s Caucasus Barometer (CB) surveys regularly collect information about how the interviewers assess each of the conducted interviews – so called paradata that provides additional insight into the conditions surrounding the interviews (e.g., whether someone besides the respondent and the interviewer was present during the face-to-face interview), as well as interviewers’ subjective assessments of, for example, level of sincerity of the respondents.
22.06.2015 | ორშაბათი
[Note: Over the next two weeks, Social Science in the Caucasus will publish the work of six young researchers who entered CRRC-Georgia’s Junior Fellowship Program (JFP) in February 2015.]
12.05.2016 | ხუთშაბათი
2012 წლის საპარლამენტო არჩევნების შემდეგ ძალაუფლების მშვიდობიანი გადაცემის პირველი პრეცენდენტის შედეგად საქართველოს პოზიცია Freedom House-ისა და Polity IV-ის რეიტინგებში გაუმჯობესდა. ამის მიუხედავად, ბოლო პერიოდში ჩატარებული გამოკითხვების შედეგები მოწმობს, რომ საქართველოს მოსახლეობის მხრიდან დემოკრატიის მხარდაჭერა მცირდება.
15.05.2016 | კვირა Fearing for the children - the blog looks at how homophobic attitudes vary along gender lines taking into account whether men and women live in a household with children:
19.01.2015 | ორშაბათი
Taxi drivers tell perhaps the most telling story of Georgia’s economic transition. They often complain that the transition made their high social status useless, thus pushing them into taxi driving. This often heard and mocked complaint highlights the contrast between what is expected from and what is delivered by the labor market. This blog post shows that the taxi drivers are not entirely wrong.
22.01.2015 | ხუთშაბათი This blog post examines how social status is associated with individual and household well-being
05.01.2015 | ორშაბათი This blog post draws upon official electoral statistics and public opinion survey data from the CRRC Caucasus Barometer (CB) survey to analyze expressions of civic engagement in Armenia and Georgia.
27.11.2014 | ხუთშაბათი
The CRRC Caucasus Barometer (CB) survey results demonstrate that Georgians exhibit relatively high levels of interpersonal and institutional trust when compared to their Armenian neighbors. Trust is an important component of “social capital,” which is widely perceived to be a necessary condition for a thriving entrepreneurial class and small and medium enterprise (SME) sector.
04.12.2014 | ხუთშაბათი
As discussed in the first blog post of this series, the results of the CRRC Caucasus Barometer (CB) survey show that Georgians demonstrate higher levels of interpersonal and institutional trust than Armenians. These types of trust are important indicators of social capital, which is often taken as a necessary condition for the presence of a robust, productive entrepreneurial class and small and medium enterprise (SME) sector.
28.12.2015 | ორშაბათი
[In this last blog post of 2015, CRRC Researcher Tamuna Khoshtaria reflects on one the most important aspects of Georgian society – people to rely on, i.e. relatives, friends, neighbors.]
When I was studying in Germany, the dormitory’s housekeeper told me: ‘I have seen students of many nations coming here to live, and many of them were homesick at some point, but for Georgians, it has always been the hardest to live abroad.’
15.02.2012 | ოთხშაბათი
Widespread apathy and a general disbelief that good can come from joint effort is a major factor hindering social capital in Georgia. One indicator of apathy can be fatalism, meaning the belief that all events are predetermined and therefore inevitable. This blog explores the level of political fatalism in Georgia and how it is connected to Georgians’ perceptions of the country’s current political course and democracy.
22.02.2012 | ოთხშაბათი
We have previously worked on social capital, and this issue recently was taken up by the Caucasus Anylatical Digest. The issue discusses the concept of social capital and its relevance to the societies of the South Caucasus.
12.02.2011 | შაბათი
CRRC has conducted a research project on access to justice in Central Asia. The project includes nationwide surveys in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, focus groups and in-depth interviews. We will be presenting the results in Almaty, Kazakhstan, on February 15, 2010, in case any of our readers are in the region.
17.03.2011 | ხუთშაბათი
Under which conditions would IDPs be willing to return to Abkhazia? Should past injustices be addressed or left alone? What do IDPs consider the main reasons for the outbreak of the war in the early 1990s? The research project “IDPs in Georgia”, conducted by CRRC for Conciliation Resource (CR) with the financial support of the European Commission’s Instrument for Stability, provide insight to these questions and many more.
07.04.2011 | ხუთშაბათი
What are the social, political and economic attitudes of people in Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaijan? Do Georgians, Armenians and Azerbaijanis think employment or territorial integrity is the most important issue facing their respective countries? How do they judge the fairness of elections or media independence? How trusting or supportive are they of the European Union, NATO membership or local institutions?
05.05.2011 | ხუთშაბათი
CRRC conducted a survey on political and economic attitudes in Georgia for the National Democratic Institute (NDI), funded by the Swedish International development Cooperation Agency (SIDA). The fieldwork of the survey took place in March, 2011 and surveyed 2,893 respondents in Georgia. The survey covered the issues of public importance, perceptions and attitudes toward democracy and ongoing reforms, as well as various domestic and foreign affairs.
10.05.2011 | სამშაბათი
CRRC is happy to announce its new Online Data Analysis (ODA) program! Crunching numbers from CRRC surveys is now easier than ever.
10.05.2011 | სამშაბათი By Tamar Zurabishvili
In September 2009, CRRC conducted a baseline survey on the Georgian media landscape within the scope of an EU-funded project entitled, “Strengthening the Media's Role as a Watchdog Institution in Georgia”, implemented by the Eurasia Partnership Foundation.
11.05.2011 | ოთხშაბათი
By Sarrah Bechor
CRRC recently completed its 8th annual Caucasus Barometer survey, gathering data about perceptions of trust, livelihood and social realities during face-to-face interviews in Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia. Some of the results from these countries have been compared to results from 22 other countries that were surveyed as part of the 2010 Pew Global Attitudes Project Survey.
24.05.2011 | სამშაბათი
With the upcoming World Blood Donor Day on June, 14, the question about current attitudes towards blood donation in the South Caucasus is worth examining. While there are considerable efforts in all three countries to increase donation rates and improve blood screening, donation rates remain below 1%, according to WHO data for Armenia and Georgia, and thereby stand at the lower end in international comparison.
13.06.2011 | ორშაბათი
We have previously highlighted the research on social capital that CRRC has undertaken with the generous support of USAID. As we said at the time, and have argued in subsequent presentations, social capital is a missing link in Georgia. Its absence impedes social, economic and political development.
29.06.2012 | პარასკევი In 2011 CRRC conducted a survey on Volunteering and Civic Participation in Georgia. A part of this survey aimed at exploring relationships between neighbours. The results indicate that the relationships between neighbours in Georgia can be a promising starting point for building social capital and achieving improved housing conditions through collaboration.
10.02.2010 | ოთხშაბათი
Wondering what Georgians do in their free time? Do they read, listen to music, go to cinemas and theatres, stay at home and spend time with their families, watch TV, or just sleep?
18.05.2010 | სამშაბათი
The CRRC’s annual Data Initiative Survey will be renamed into the Caucasus Barometer starting from 2010. At CRRC, we think that the new name better reflects the essence of the survey and is more understandable for the general public and the journalists.
30.05.2010 | კვირა
In running an election-day survey (not an exit poll, which we are not so enthused about), we have decided to attempt something new: we are now aggregating the information via SMS. This gives us the information in real time, and the data will be available for immediate analysis the moment the last SMS has been received.
31.10.2010 | კვირა
So! Our SMS project worked quite well. Critical to its success was the systematic error control early in the day. Our interviewers still made a fair number of mistakes in the early morning. It was the first time we introduced this system, and transferring the number correctly to SMS requires significant attention to detail.
17.06.2010 | ხუთშაბათი
By Jesse Tatum and Vazha Burduli
From environmental catastrophe to violence, our world currently faces serious challenges with long-term consequences. In this context, what do people in the Caucasus consider to be the most acute problems?
From environmental catastrophe to violence, our world currently faces serious challenges with long-term consequences. In this context, what do people in the Caucasus consider to be the most acute problems?
Regarding the greatest threats to the world today, the spread of nuclear weapons and poverty are foremost on the minds of people in the South Caucasus, according to the 2009 CB.
20.06.2010 | კვირა
Looking at the recent data from the Global Attitudes Project of the Pew Research Center, we came across a curious survey item. Who do people across the world think will win the World Cup?
05.08.2010 | ხუთშაბათი
The 2010 Georgian Constitutional Reform in the Eyes of the Public report is now available. As a product of the study commissioned by the Netherlands Institute for Multiparty Democracy (NIMD) and carried out by CRRC-Georgia, it presents the results of the opinion survey on constitutional and governance processes and their development in Georgia.
25.08.2010 | ოთხშაბათი
When presenting our work, or talking about it informally, we are asked fairly similar questions: do you do your interviewing in all of the country? How do you select the respondents? How do you know they are not lying to you? Are people willing to say things critical of the government? How do you design a questionnaire?
27.08.2010 | პარასკევი
A recent poll by the Pew Research Center showing that 18% of Americans think that US President Barack Obama is Muslim, and that a further 43% respond that they don't know what religion the President practices, has raised discussions about the level of political knowledge in democracies. Indeed, Newsweek has published a slideshow showing dumb things that Americans believe.
06.10.2010 | ოთხშაბათი
External migration from Georgia since its independence in 1991 has significantly influenced the shape and dynamics of modern Georgia. For instance, almost everyone in Georgia knows at least someone who has migrated. Entire families are supported by remittances sent home and entire communities have been altered by these movements. Georgia's supply of labor, particularly highly skilled labor, has also been significantly affected.
06.10.2010 | ოთხშაბათი Q: What’s the difference between a survey and a census?
01.02.2008 | პარასკევი
The alpha version of our Data Initiative data set, broad household data, covering lots of household data, but also political attitudes, social development, some health, education, migration, and social capital questions (and more) is online now. We interviewed more than 8000 people, so this really is the single largest dataset that is available on developments across the South Caucasus.
21.03.2008 | პარასკევი
Corporate Social Responsibility, a fashionable issue, is becoming a topic in the South Caucasus as well. CRRC research fellow, Giorgi Meladze, explored Georgian corporations’ generosity in his research undertaken in 2006.
03.05.2008 | შაბათი
06.05.2008 | სამშაბათი
Sometimes it's worth clicking on those Gmail links. "Ask 500" is a website in beta, the web version of a straw poll. Polling? Surveys? Obviously I wanted to know more. To say it up front: it's about as unrepresentative as you can get, since it assembles those that suffer from terminal curiosity.
12.06.2008 | ხუთშაბათი
Yet another survey has been sent around as a PDF in Georgia. The survey attempted to measure the postelection mood in Tbilisi. According to the information provided in the PDF, 503 respondents have been selected randomly and interviewed by telephone. According to the results 46.92% of respondents say they "fully disagree with the announced results of the 2008 parliamentary elections". 25,65% say they totally agree with the announced results. We have been asked to comment, and some of the things we have to say will sound pretty obvious.
09.07.2008 | ოთხშაბათი
Recently, we happened upon an article that talks about the use of Russian across the Caucasus. Is Russian becoming obsolete? According to the article, some Georgian politicians suggest this is the case. At the same time, the article points out that the uptake of English is too slow to replace Russian as a lingua franca.
05.09.2008 | პარასკევი
Georgian IPResearch (first time we heard of them, actually) conducted a phone poll between Aug.25 and Sept.2. 450 respondents were questioned countrywide. While we have our strong reservations about these telephone polls (they are biased towards people with phones, picking up calls from strangers, and bored enough to chat), they may serve as a preliminary indication.
09.09.2008 | სამშაბათი
Corruption remains an endemic feature in the region, outside Georgia. No wonder, then, that it continues to receive considerable attention from organizations and donors. Currently, we are being asked to run a survey (we will publish details on that later). How do you do this? Not all of this research is intuitive. Here are a couple of examples of what can go wrong, taken from the draft questionnaire we were given.
17.09.2008 | ოთხშაბათი
How do urban Russians view the conflicts in South Ossetia and Abkhazia? From September, 5th-8th, 2008 the Analytical Center of Yuri Levada conducted a survey in ten big cities of the Russian Federation, interviewing 1000 Russian respondents. We have translated the results into English here, as they are only available in the original Russian on the Levada website.
26.09.2008 | პარასკევი
And here is an update on Russian views, made available by the Levada Center on the 22nd of September. As previously stated, this indicates that Russian public opinion generally supports the government's course.
02.10.2008 | ხუთშაბათი
In Georgia, attention now turns towards sorting out the impact of the short August conflict. How plausible is the reporting we are seeing? Do the journalists get it right?
18.12.2007 | სამშაბათი With the election in Georgia approaching fast, polls are beginning to appear every week. Unfortunately, many of these polls are taken at face value. The reality is that at this point there is not a single pre-election poll that has demonstrated credibility. This does not ...
20.10.2008 | ორშაბათი
What's the level of engagement in the three countries of the South Caucasus? Are people involved? Are they staying abreast of what goes on? Again, our Data Initiative provides insight, since we asked people whether they had engaged in various activities over the last six months
23.10.2008 | ხუთშაბათი
So here's something that we are a little puzzled about. The Economist is undertaking a poll to see which American Presidential candidate is favored by the world. In a very blue worldwide map, rooting for Obama, two noticeable yellowish spots, Macedonia and Georgia. McCain, of course, is popular in Georgia for having said "Today we all are Georgians" during the recent conflict.
29.10.2008 | ოთხშაბათი
Earlier this year CRRC-Georgia conducted a survey “Public Opinion on the Parliament in Georgia” for Transparency International. CRRC used a random walk methodology for the household selection and Kish table for the individual respondents with the sample size of 1895 respondents (1538 completed interviews; 19% non-response).
31.10.2008 | პარასკევი
Public schools in Yerevan face serious problems of restructuring. Most of the schools have not been renovated since the collapse of the Soviet Union. Does economic well-being affect the level of social capital in the neighborhood? Are the neighborhoods with higher social capital more likely to be willing to participate in school renovations?
08.11.2008 | შაბათი
World Public Opinion is the initiative of the Program on International Policy Attitudes (PIPA) of the University of Maryland that explores public opinion on a variety of topics in 25 countries across the globe, including Azerbaijan, the only South Caucasus country represented in the survey. Russia and Ukraine are the other two former USSR countries that the project includes.
22.11.2008 | შაბათი
One of the most impressive recent survey efforts, measuring attitudes about different countries in transition, has been undertaken by EBRD. Called Life in Transition Survey (LiTS), this is an attempt to look at how 29 'transitioning' countries have developed following 1989. The survey tracks "public attitudes, well-being, and the impact of economic and political change".
28.11.2008 | პარასკევი
What's the balance sheet of the Rose Revolution so far? There is agreement that there has been tremendous progress in some fields. The economy has grown, street-level corruption has evaporated, and in many other instances the state functions for the people.
10.12.2006 | კვირა The Georgian Research Institute on Addictions (GRIA) in 2003 conducted a survey of about 700 students in Tbilisi's universities.
03.12.2007 | ორშაბათი With upcoming elections in Georgia, the attention is back on a theme that otherwise often gets neglected: what does the Georgian electorate want?
22.12.2006 | პარასკევი
Diana Ter-Stepanyan evaluated the effectiveness of the civic education training program implemented in Armenian high schools (upper grades of secondary schools). She conducted a quantitative (questionnaire based) survey among 494tenth grade schoolchildren from all of Armenia’s regions to assess the effectiveness and efficiency of “Human Rights,” “Civil Society” and “State and Law” courses offered since 2001 in the scope of the civic education program in the schools.
16.10.2017 | ორშაბათი
Visa liberalization: How much do people in Georgia know about the conditions of visa-free travel to the EU?
CRRC’s previous blog posts have shown that the population of Georgia had rather moderate expectations of the recent visa liberalization with the Schengen zone countries, especially when it comes to the question of how much ordinary people will benefit from it. Europe Foundation’s latest survey on Knowledge of and Attitudes towards the European Union in Georgia, conducted in May 2017, provides a more nuanced understanding on how people in Georgia feel about this process and to what extent they are familiar with the conditions of visa liberalization.
16.10.2017 | ორშაბათი
Visa liberalization: How much do people in Georgia know about the conditions of visa-free travel to the EU?CRRC’s previous blog posts have shown that the population of Georgia had rather moderate expectations of the recent visa liberalization with the Schengen zone countries, especially when it comes to the question of how much ordinary people will benefit from it. Europe Foundation’s latest survey on Knowledge of and Attitudes towards the European Union in Georgia, conducted in May 2017, provides a more nuanced understanding on how people in Georgia feel about this process and to what extent they are familiar with the conditions of visa liberalization.
23.10.2017 | ორშაბათი Why do people take the time to respond to surveys in Georgia? A telephone survey experiment CRRC-Georgia carried out in May 2017 suggests that small financial incentives may actually discourage people from participating in surveys. This finding suggests people may respond to surveys for intrinsic (e.g. because they are curious or want to help) rather than extrinsic reasons (e.g. doing something for the money).
13.11.2017 | ორშაბათი Georgian parliament recently adopted constitutional amendments. Among the many changes were those regulating the sale of agricultural land. According to the amendments, “Agricultural land, as a resource of special importance, can only be owned by the state, a self-governing entity, a citizen of Georgia, or a union of Georgian citizens.” While the constitution allows for exceptions, which should be regulated by a law yet to be written, it is expected that foreigners will not be allowed to buy agricultural land in Georgia as freely as Georgian citizens. This blog post looks at public opinion about foreigners owning land in Georgia.
27.11.2017 | ორშაბათი Professionalism, honesty, and fair competition are important in any institution. Yet, incidents involving corruption, nepotism and/or a lack of professionalism are sometimes reported in the Georgian media when the work of local government bodies is covered. How does the public perceive local government? This blog post describes data from the June 2017 CRRC/NDI survey, which show that a majority of people in Georgia thought that there were problems with nepotism and a lack of professionalism in local government. Moreover, roughly half of the population thought that their local government also faces a problem with corruption.