POP releases the latest five core social indicators

Press Release on September 15, 2020

POP releases the latest five core social indicators

Special Announcements

The predecessor of Hong Kong Public Opinion Program (HKPOP) was The Public Opinion Programme at The University of Hong Kong (HKUPOP). “POP” in this release can refer to HKPOP or its predecessor HKUPOP.

According to the result of our public consultation conducted a while ago, the survey of the five core social indicators has been increased to once a month from the second half of this year, while the remaining 20 or so non-core social indicators, freedom and rule of law sub-indicators will remain to be run on a half-yearly cycle.

Abstract

POP successfully interviewed 1,007 Hong Kong residents by a random telephone survey conducted by real interviewers from late August to early September. Latest results show that on a scale of 0 to 10, people’s ratings on all five core social indicators are lower than 5 marks. Ranked from the highest to the lowest are “prosperity”, “freedom”, “stability”, “democracy” and “rule of law”. Their scores are 4.15, 4.13, 3.63, 3.49 and 3.41 respectively. Compared with a month ago, ratings of “freedom” and “rule of law” have dropped significantly. Meanwhile, all five indicators have registered all-time record lows again since the survey began in 1997. The effective response rate of the survey is 58.4%. The maximum sampling error of ratings is +/-0.28 at 95% confidence level.

Contact Information

Date of survey : 31/8-4/9/2020
Survey method : Random telephone survey conducted by real interviewers
Target population : Cantonese-speaking Hong Kong residents aged 18 or above
Sample size[1] : 1,007 (including 498 landline and 509 mobile samples)
Effective response rate : 58.4%
Sampling error[2] : Sampling error of ratings not more than +/-0.28 at 95% conf. level
Weighting method : Rim-weighted according to figures provided by the Census and Statistics Department. The gender-age distribution of the Hong Kong population came from “Mid-year population for 2019”, while the educational attainment (highest level attended) distribution and economic activity status distribution came from “Women and Men in Hong Kong – Key Statistics (2019 Edition)”.

[1]     This figure is the total sample size of the survey. Some questions may only involve a subsample, the size of which can be found in the tables below.

[2]     All error figures in this release are calculated at 95% confidence level. “95% confidence level” means that if we were to repeat a certain survey 100 times with different random samples, we would expect 95 times having the population parameter within the respective error margins calculated. Because of sampling errors, when quoting percentages, journalists should refrain from reporting decimal places, whereas one decimal place can be used when quoting rating figures.

Latest Figures

Herewith the latest figures of the five core social indicators:

Date of survey 16-19/9/19 14-17/4/20 6-9/7/20 3-6/8/20 31/8-4/9/20 Latest change
Sample size[3] 587-669 627-654 598-664 584-619 590-618
Response rate 69.5% 64.5% 52.4% 64.4% 58.4%
Latest findings Finding Finding Finding Finding Finding & error
Degree of prosperity 5.87[4] 5.45[4] 5.35 4.19[4] 4.15+/-0.21 -0.04
Degree of freedom 6.00[4] 5.58[4] 4.84[4] 4.74 4.13+/-0.28 -0.61[4]
Degree of stability 4.05[4] 4.44[4] 4.12[4] 3.76[4] 3.63+/-0.24 -0.13
Degree of democracy 4.55[4] 4.61 4.37 3.70[4] 3.49+/-0.28 -0.21
Compliance with the rule of law 4.41[4] 4.45 4.14 3.80 3.41+/-0.25 -0.38[4]

[3]     Before March 2020, weighted count was used to report subsample size. Starting from March 2020, raw count was used instead.

[4]     The difference between the figure and the result from the previous survey has gone beyond the sampling error at 95% confidence level, meaning that the change is statistically significant prima facie. However, whether the difference is statistically significant is not the same as whether they are practically useful or meaningful, and different weighting methods could have been applied in different surveys.

On a scale of 0 to 10, people’s ratings on all five core social indicators are lower than 5 marks. Ranked from the highest to the lowest are “prosperity”, “freedom”, “stability”, “democracy” and “rule of law”. Their scores are 4.15, 4.13, 3.63, 3.49 and 3.41 respectively. Compared with a month ago, ratings of “freedom” and “rule of law” have dropped significantly. Meanwhile, all five indicators have again registered all-time record lows since the survey began in 1997.

Opinion Daily

In 2007, POP started collaborating with Wisers Information Limited whereby Wisers supplies to POP a record of significant events of that day according to the research method designed by POP. These daily entries would then become “Opinion Daily” after they are verified by POP.

For the polling items covered in this press release, the previous survey was conducted from 3 to 6 August, 2020 while this survey was conducted from 31 August to 4 September, 2020. During this period, herewith the significant events selected from counting newspaper headlines and commentaries on a daily basis and covered by at least 25% of the local newspaper articles. Readers can make their own judgment if these significant events have any impacts to different polling figures.

3/9/20 The Universal Community Testing Programme locates two new cases among about 128,000 tests conducted.
2/9/20 The government relaxes anti-epidemic measures.
1/9/20 About 126,000 people have taken the test on the first day of the Universal Community Testing Programme.
27/8/20 China Coast Guard intercepted a speedboat to Taiwan on August 23 and arrested 12 yonng Hong Kong people.
26/8/20 Police arrests 13 people who were not “people in white” for rioting in the 7.21 incident.
25/8/20 The government relaxes anti-epidemic measures.
19/8/20 Unemployment rate in Hong Kong rises to 6.1%.
18/8/20 The government announces the second round of Employment Support Scheme.
11/8/20 The NPCSC decides that the current Legislative Council shall continue to discharge duties for no less than one year.
10/8/20 Police searches Next Media and arrests Jimmy Lai, Agnes Chow and other people under national security law.
8/8/20 The Hong Kong government issues statement condemning US sanction on 11 Chinese or Hong Kong government officials.
7/8/20 The government announces mass voluntary coronavirus testing scheme.

Data Analysis

Survey shows that on a scale of 0 to 10, people’s ratings on all five core social indicators are lower than 5 marks. Ranked from the highest to the lowest are “prosperity”, “freedom”, “stability”, “democracy” and “rule of law”. Their scores are 4.15, 4.13, 3.63, 3.49 and 3.41 respectively. Compared with a month ago, ratings of “freedom” and “rule of law” have dropped significantly. Meanwhile, all five indicators have registered all-time record lows again since the survey began in 1997.

Detailed Findings

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