November 2, 2009

End of Communism Cheered but Now with More Reservations

Survey Methods

The current survey was conducted Aug. 27 to Sept. 24, 2009 among 14,760 respondents in Britain, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Lithuania, Poland, Russia, Slovakia, Spain, Ukraine and the United States. In each country, interviews were conducted in local languages with representative samples of the adult population (for details see Methods in Detail below).

The survey reexamines many key questions included in the “Pulse of Europe” survey, conducted April 15 to May 31, 1991, by the Times Mirror Center for the People & the Press (the forerunner of the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press). For that survey, interviews were conducted in local languages with 12,569 people in Britain, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Poland and Spain, as well as three republics of the Soviet Union: Lithuania, Russia and Ukraine. All samples were nationally representative, with the exception of Russia, which did not include respondents living east of the Ural Mountains.

Even though in 1991 Czechoslovakia was a single country, for the purposes of this report, we show the 1991 results for geographic areas that correspond to the present-day Czech Republic and Slovakia.

In 1991, Germany was a reunited country, but throughout the report we show the 1991 and 2009 results for geographic areas that correspond to the former East Germany and former West Germany.

For all questions included in both the 1991 and 2009 surveys, efforts were made to ensure that the 2009 study used the same translation that was used in 1991.

The following pages present the details on the methodologies for both the 1991 and 2009 surveys, including information on sample design, survey mode, the languages in which the interviews were conducted, fieldwork dates, sample sizes, and the margins of error.

Methodological Appendix

(August-September 2009 Pew Global Attitudes Survey)

Methods in Detail: August-September 2009 Pew Global Attitudes Survey

About the Survey
Results for the survey are based on telephone and face-to-face interviews conducted under the direction of Princeton Survey Research Associates International. All surveys are based on national samples.

The descriptions below show the margin of sampling error based on all interviews conducted in that country. For results based on the full sample in a given country, one can say with 95% confidence that the error attributable to sampling and other random effects is plus or minus the margin of error. In addition to sampling error, one should bear in mind that question wording and practical difficulties in conducting surveys can introduce error or bias into the findings of opinion polls.

Methods in Detail: Spring 1991 Times Mirror Center Pulse of Europe Survey

About the Survey
Results for the survey are based on face-to-face interviews. The descriptions below show the margin of sampling error based on all interviews conducted in that country. For results based on the full sample in a given country, one can say with 95% confidence that the error attributable to sampling and other random effects is plus or minus the margin of error. In addition to sampling error, one should bear in mind that question wording and practical difficulties in conducting surveys can introduce error or bias into the findings of opinion polls.