Most think social media has made it easier to manipulate and divide people, but they also say it informs and raises awareness.
As daunting challenges from Russia, China and a flagging global economy ripple across the world, Americans and Germans continue to say that relations between their countries are good. Most Americans and Germans continue to see each other as partners on protecting European security, and publics in each country are willing to support using military action to protect themselves and their allies.
Results presented in this data essay are drawn from nationally representative surveys conducted over the past 20 years in more than 60 countries.
The Chinese Communist Party is preparing for its 20th National Congress, an event likely to result in an unprecedented third term for President Xi Jinping. Since Xi took office in 2013, opinion of China in the U.S. and other advanced economies has turned more negative. How did it get to be this way?
Despite the many depressing stories dominating the international news cycle, there is also a note of positivity among survey respondents in views of the UN, the benefits of international cooperation for solving problems and the importance of common values for bringing nations together.
A median of 68% across 19 countries think their country has done a good job dealing with the coronavirus outbreak, with majorities saying this in every country surveyed except Japan. However, most also believe the pandemic has created greater divisions in their societies and exposed weaknesses in their political systems – and these view are especially common in the U.S.
Large majorities in most of the 19 countries surveyed have negative views of China, but relatively few say bilateral relations are bad.
Most say U.S. is reliable partner, and ratings for Biden are mostly positive – although down significantly from last year.
More than nine-in-ten Poles see Russia as a major threat and have no confidence at all in Putin
Americans see China as a growing superpower – and increasingly say it is the world’s leading economy.
Attitudes toward NATO have grown more positive: 67% express a favorable opinion of the organization, up from 61% in 2021.
We asked respondents in both countries to, in their own words, define what democracy means to them. Most commonly, people mention three broad concepts: freedom and human rights, elections and procedures, and having a voice in government.
As democratic nations have wrestled with economic, social and geopolitical upheaval in recent years, the future of liberal democracy has come into question. Our international surveys reveal key insights into how citizens think about democratic governance.
Germans and Americans have both become more skeptical of China.
Nearly 19,000 adults in publics ranging from the UK, Italy, Greece, Japan, South Korea, Germany, and the U.S., among others, share where they find meaning in their lives and what keeps them going.
Family is preeminent for most publics but work, material well-being and health also play a key role.
The U.S. is seen positively in advanced economies for its technology, entertainment, military and universities, but negatively for its health care system, discrimination and the state of its democracy.
Dissatisfaction with the functioning of democracy is linked to concerns about the economy, the pandemic and social divisions.
Wide majorities in most of the 17 advanced economies surveyed say having people of many different backgrounds improves their society, but most also see conflicts between partisan, racial and ethnic groups.
Germany’s pandemic response and its role in the EU are also rated positively.
In Response to Climate Change, Citizens in Advanced Economies Are Willing To Alter How They Live and Work
Citizens offer mixed reviews of how their societies have responded to climate change, and many question the efficacy of international efforts to stave off a global environmental crisis.
Despite an uptick in positive views of the economy in some places, many say that children will be worse off financially than their parents.
Unfavorable views of China also hover near historic highs in most of the 17 advanced economies surveyed.
Publics disagree about whether restrictions on public activity, such as stay-at-home orders or mandates to wear masks in public, have gone far enough to combat COVID-19.
Most would welcome government-sponsored job training and other interventions.
In the U.S., concerns about political corruption are especially widespread. Two-in-three Americans agree that the phrase “most politicians are corrupt” describes their country well.
The novel coronavirus continues to pose weighty challenges for people around the world.
A median of 45% across 34 surveyed countries say it is necessary to believe in God to be moral and have good values. However, public opinion on this question, as well as the role of God, prayer and religion varies by country, region and economic development.
U.S. adults give high marks to South Korea and Germany’s pandemic responses. In contrast, most believe China has done an only fair or poor job.
Americans See Spread of Disease as Top International Threat, Along With Terrorism, Nuclear Weapons, Cyberattacks
Most say cooperation with other countries is important in dealing with global threats, especially on the spread of infectious diseases.