Research from other organisations

As Trade Tensions Rise, Fewer Americans See China Favorably

Pew Research - Fri, 06/12/2019 - 7:51am

Overall, 38% of Americans have a favorable opinion of China, down slightly from 44% in 2017. Concerns about China include economic threats, cyberattacks, environmental damage and human rights.

The post As Trade Tensions Rise, Fewer Americans See China Favorably appeared first on Pew Research Center.

Methodology

Pew Research - Fri, 06/12/2019 - 3:59am

About Pew Research Center’s Spring 2019 Global Attitudes Survey Results for the survey are based on telephone and face-to-face interviews conducted under the direction of Gallup and Abt Associates. The results are based on national samples, unless otherwise noted. More details about our international survey methodology and country-specific sample designs are available here.

The post Methodology appeared first on Pew Research Center.

Acknowledgments

Pew Research - Fri, 06/12/2019 - 3:59am

This report is a collaborative effort based on the input and analysis of the following individuals. Laura Silver, Senior Researcher Kat Devlin, Research Associate Christine Huang, Research Assistant James Bell, Vice President, Global Strategy Alexandra Castillo, Research Associate Jeremiah Cha, Research Assistant Stefan S. Cornibert, Communications Manager Claudia Deane, Vice President, Research Moira Fagan, Research […]

The post Acknowledgments appeared first on Pew Research Center.

Appendix: Factors that influence views of China

Pew Research - Fri, 06/12/2019 - 3:59am

In this report, we explored factors related to people’s perceptions of China for a subset of 15 non-European countries. To do this, we performed a multilevel regression analysis predicting favorable views of China as a function of people’s attitudes about economic issues in their country and toward China’s influence, as well as their demographic characteristics. […]

The post Appendix: Factors that influence views of China appeared first on Pew Research Center.

2. Attitudes toward China

Pew Research - Fri, 06/12/2019 - 3:59am

Around the globe, people are divided in their opinions of China. A median of 40% across 34 countries surveyed have a favorable view of China, while a median of 41% have an unfavorable opinion. The country’s most positive ratings come from Russia (71% favorable), Nigeria (70%) and Lebanon (68%). The most negative views are found […]

The post 2. Attitudes toward China appeared first on Pew Research Center.

1. Views of the balance of power between U.S. and China

Pew Research - Fri, 06/12/2019 - 3:59am

The United States is named as the top economic power in 21 of the 34 countries surveyed, while China is considered the top economy in 12 (the U.S. and China are tied as top economic power in Lebanon). Still, publics are relatively divided, as no more than half name either country as the top economy […]

The post 1. Views of the balance of power between U.S. and China appeared first on Pew Research Center.

China’s Economic Growth Mostly Welcomed in Emerging Markets, but Neighbors Wary of Its Influence

Pew Research - Fri, 06/12/2019 - 3:59am

More countries still name the U.S. as the foremost economic power than say the same of China. And, even in nations that welcome China’s economic growth, few feel similarly about its growing military might.

The post China’s Economic Growth Mostly Welcomed in Emerging Markets, but Neighbors Wary of Its Influence appeared first on Pew Research Center.

Guest Column: The Evangelical Identity Crisis

Barna Blog - Wed, 04/12/2019 - 7:14am

“If everybody always lies to you, the consequence is not that you believe the lies, but rather that nobody believes anything any longer.”  —Hannah Arendt

With people spending hours on Instagram to tweak the lighting of a selfie or choosing only to post three vacation pictures from a camera roll of hundreds, it seems that everyone has become their own public relations officer seeking to publicize the very best version of themselves. Yet, despite all this effort to cast the most polished version of our lives into the newsfeeds of friends, family and coworkers, we can be painfully unaware of how the world actually perceives us.

That’s often the case not just for ourselves as individuals, but also the groups that we affiliate with in our community. Those associations can have a distorting effect on not just how we view our own lives, but also how we perceive groups with different beliefs than our own. That is no more acute than in the two most influential institutions in American life: politics and religion. The heated rhetoric that is bursting at the seams of cable news and social media seems to reinforce the goodness of one point of view, while assuming the worst about anyone who holds a different opinion.

Ground zero for this phenomenon is the modern perception of American evangelicals. The term has become a lightning rod in American society. While Republicans and conservative Christians see a group that does its best to live out the gospel message and love those around them, Democrats and people from other faith groups often characterize evangelicals as narrow-minded bigots attempting to stifle progress in the U.S. But what does the average American think of evangelicals?

Barna put a survey in the field days after the 2018 midterm elections to assess how evangelicals are viewed by the American public at large. As a political scientist, I am becoming increasingly convinced that Americans view evangelicals as a distinctly political phenomenon and, as such, understanding how political partisanship shapes views of this group seems especially helpful.

While analyzing the data, I separated the sample into self-identified political affiliation—Republicans, Democrats and Independents—then calculated to find what percentage of each group views evangelicals in a positive or negative light. My initial hunch was quickly confirmed after some very simple analysis.

Only one in 10 Republicans (of any religious affiliation) sees evangelicals in a negative light, while nearly half say that they have a positive impression. Compare that to the results from Democrats—just one in five has a positive outlook on evangelicals, while four in 10 view them negatively. It’s also noteworthy that while political independents don’t perceive evangelicals like political partisans do, it’s clear that their opinions are closer to Democrats than to Republicans. The impression here is that the Republican viewpoint is unique among the American population.

In addition, the survey included 20 different terms that could possibly describe evangelicals. Using the partisan identification previously described, I calculated the share of each partisan group that checked the box beside each of the descriptors. The results provide some context for why Democrats view evangelicals more negatively, while Republicans have a warmer perception.

The terms chosen most frequently by Democrats were: politically conservative and religiously conservative, narrow minded, homophobic and uptight. The ones that Republicans selected were: religiously conservative (but not politically conservative), caring, hopeful and friendly. It would almost appear that these partisan affiliations are talking about two completely different religious groups. Democrats seem to be pointing out some of the worst qualities they perceive about evangelicals, while Republicans are quick to emphasize positive characteristics.

The one that is the most puzzling to me is that while Democrats believe that evangelicals are both religiously and politically conservative, Republicans are much less likely to believe that evangelicals are politically conservative. I think this illustrates a central fact in American politics: Each side perceives their political viewpoints as pragmatic and moderate, while the other political party’s platform is viewed as extreme. In essence, we’ve lost a sense of what the “middle” really means.

It would be easy for evangelicals to look over these results and immediately become defensive. Retorts like, “that’s just what the media / their friends / the world tells them to believe,” are often quick to roll off the tongue when confronted with data like this. However, I would recommend that evangelicals lay down their defenses and try, as best as they can, to put themselves in the shoes of those who think about the world differently than they do. As Hannah Arendt alludes, it’s easy to believe that the other side is being lied to, but it’s much more difficult to believe that we are lying to ourselves.

Evangelicals do have a perception problem. It’s fair to say that some of that is media-driven, but it would also be appropriate to say that some of it is self-inflicted. Often, the focus remains on the heated rhetoric and divisive language used by some people of faith to articulate their beliefs, when it should be on the simple, even unnoticed acts of kindness that evangelicals engage in daily.

There’s no simple way to fix this problem of perception. Instead, I am reminded of Paul’s admonition to the church in Galatia: “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” The only way to change the narrative around evangelicals is for them to not grow tired of doing what is good.

Dr. Ryan Burge is an assistant professor of political science at Eastern Illinois University. He has published over a dozen articles in peer-reviewed academic journals as well co-founded the website Religion in Public (https://religioninpublic.blog), which is a platform for social scientists to make their work accessible to a wider audience. He is the pastor of First Baptist Church of Mt. Vernon, Illinois.

Feature image by Steve Houghton-Burnett on Unsplash

The post Guest Column: The Evangelical Identity Crisis appeared first on Barna Group.

Guest Column: The Evangelical Identity Crisis

Barna - Wed, 04/12/2019 - 7:14am

“If everybody always lies to you, the consequence is not that you believe the lies, but rather that nobody believes anything any longer.”  —Hannah Arendt

With people spending hours on Instagram to tweak the lighting of a selfie or choosing only to post three vacation pictures from a camera roll of hundreds, it seems that everyone has become their own public relations officer seeking to publicize the very best version of themselves. Yet, despite all this effort to cast the most polished version of our lives into the newsfeeds of friends, family and coworkers, we can be painfully unaware of how the world actually perceives us.

That’s often the case not just for ourselves as individuals, but also the groups that we affiliate with in our community. Those associations can have a distorting effect on not just how we view our own lives, but also how we perceive groups with different beliefs than our own. That is no more acute than in the two most influential institutions in American life: politics and religion. The heated rhetoric that is bursting at the seams of cable news and social media seems to reinforce the goodness of one point of view, while assuming the worst about anyone who holds a different opinion.

Ground zero for this phenomenon is the modern perception of American evangelicals. The term has become a lightning rod in American society. While Republicans and conservative Christians see a group that does its best to live out the gospel message and love those around them, Democrats and people from other faith groups often characterize evangelicals as narrow-minded bigots attempting to stifle progress in the U.S. But what does the average American think of evangelicals?

Barna put a survey in the field days after the 2018 midterm elections to assess how evangelicals are viewed by the American public at large. As a political scientist, I am becoming increasingly convinced that Americans view evangelicals as a distinctly political phenomenon and, as such, understanding how political partisanship shapes views of this group seems especially helpful.

While analyzing the data, I separated the sample into self-identified political affiliation—Republicans, Democrats and Independents—then calculated to find what percentage of each group views evangelicals in a positive or negative light. My initial hunch was quickly confirmed after some very simple analysis.

Only one in 10 Republicans (of any religious affiliation) sees evangelicals in a negative light, while nearly half say that they have a positive impression. Compare that to the results from Democrats—just one in five has a positive outlook on evangelicals, while four in 10 view them negatively. It’s also noteworthy that while political independents don’t perceive evangelicals like political partisans do, it’s clear that their opinions are closer to Democrats than to Republicans. The impression here is that the Republican viewpoint is unique among the American population.

In addition, the survey included 20 different terms that could possibly describe evangelicals. Using the partisan identification previously described, I calculated the share of each partisan group that checked the box beside each of the descriptors. The results provide some context for why Democrats view evangelicals more negatively, while Republicans have a warmer perception.

The terms chosen most frequently by Democrats were: politically conservative and religiously conservative, narrow minded, homophobic and uptight. The ones that Republicans selected were: religiously conservative (but not politically conservative), caring, hopeful and friendly. It would almost appear that these partisan affiliations are talking about two completely different religious groups. Democrats seem to be pointing out some of the worst qualities they perceive about evangelicals, while Republicans are quick to emphasize positive characteristics.

The one that is the most puzzling to me is that while Democrats believe that evangelicals are both religiously and politically conservative, Republicans are much less likely to believe that evangelicals are politically conservative. I think this illustrates a central fact in American politics: Each side perceives their political viewpoints as pragmatic and moderate, while the other political party’s platform is viewed as extreme. In essence, we’ve lost a sense of what the “middle” really means.

It would be easy for evangelicals to look over these results and immediately become defensive. Retorts like, “that’s just what the media / their friends / the world tells them to believe,” are often quick to roll off the tongue when confronted with data like this. However, I would recommend that evangelicals lay down their defenses and try, as best as they can, to put themselves in the shoes of those who think about the world differently than they do. As Hannah Arendt alludes, it’s easy to believe that the other side is being lied to, but it’s much more difficult to believe that we are lying to ourselves.

Evangelicals do have a perception problem. It’s fair to say that some of that is media-driven, but it would also be appropriate to say that some of it is self-inflicted. Often, the focus remains on the heated rhetoric and divisive language used by some people of faith to articulate their beliefs, when it should be on the simple, even unnoticed acts of kindness that evangelicals engage in daily.

There’s no simple way to fix this problem of perception. Instead, I am reminded of Paul’s admonition to the church in Galatia: “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” The only way to change the narrative around evangelicals is for them to not grow tired of doing what is good.

Dr. Ryan Burge is an assistant professor of political science at Eastern Illinois University. He has published over a dozen articles in peer-reviewed academic journals as well co-founded the website Religion in Public (https://religioninpublic.blog), which is a platform for social scientists to make their work accessible to a wider audience. He is the pastor of First Baptist Church of Mt. Vernon, Illinois.

Feature image by Steve Houghton-Burnett on Unsplash

The post Guest Column: The Evangelical Identity Crisis appeared first on Barna Group.

Pastors Less Optimistic About Economy’s Impact on Their Congregation

Lifeway Research - Wed, 04/12/2019 - 4:50am

By Aaron Earls

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — As retail stores hope the holiday shopping season gives their bottom line a lift, American Protestant pastors are less sure the economy is helping their congregation this year.

Around 2 in 5 pastors of Protestant churches in the United States (41%) say the economy is having no impact on their church, according to a new survey from Nashville-based LifeWay Research.

The rest are nearly split on whether the effect is positive (30%) or negative (26%).

“Fundamentally, the U.S. economy is in a similar place that it was a year ago,” said Scott McConnell, executive director of LifeWay Research. “Yet pastors are less optimistic about this outside influence on their church than they were in 2018.”

While the 30% of pastors who believe the economy is having a positive impact is more than triple what it was in the first part of this decade, it’s down sharply from the 45% who felt the same way in 2018.

The percentage of pastors who feel a negative impact from the economy increased for the first time since 2010.

After falling in every survey from a high of 80% in October 2010, the percentage jumped from 14% in September 2018 to 26% this year.

African American pastors are the most likely to say the economy is having a negative effect on their congregation (49%), while white pastors are the most likely to see a positive impact for their church (33%).

Pastors of the smallest congregations, those with fewer than 50 in attendance, are most likely to say the economy is having a negative impact (37%) and the least likely to say it’s having a positive one (17%).

Offerings up or stable

Whatever the economic climate is outside the church, around 3 in 4 pastors say their offerings this year have been at or above last year’s.

More than a third (37%) say their church’s giving has been up so far this year. The same percentage (37%) say it has been the same as 2018.

Close to 1 in 5 (21%) say their offering totals are below last year’s levels.

Those numbers are not as strong as in the 2018 LifeWay Research study when 42% of Protestant pastors said their offerings were above 2017, 37% said giving was the same, and 15% said it was below.

“Last year was the first year in which many Americans had lower withholding levels because of tax reform,” said McConnell. “It’s not surprising that fewer churches are seeing year-over-year growth in 2019 without a similar stimulus to their congregants’ take-home pay.”

Larger churches are more likely to see increased giving from 2018. Half of churches with 250 or more in attendance (50%) say offerings are up this year. Forty-two percent of pastors of churches with attendance of 100 to 249 say the same.

A third of congregations with 50 to 99 in attendance (34%) have seen an increase in 2019, while only a quarter of churches with fewer than 50 (25%) have seen a similar uptick.

African American pastors are again the most likely to see a negative financial picture in their congregations. More than a third (36%) say their giving is below 2018, while 22% say the offering is above last year.

About half of all Protestant pastors (51%) say their total offerings in 2019 have been about what they budgeted, while 23% say they have been higher than budgeted and 23% say lower.

Last year, 48% said giving was similar to the budgeted amount, 29% said offering exceeded budget, and 19% said it was lower than budgeted.

Pastors say tax reform lacked impact

More than 3 in 5 pastors (64%) say they don’t think the 2018 tax reform had any effect on their church’s finances.

Similar numbers believe the changes negatively impacted their congregation (14%) as the pastors who say they’ve seen a positive impact (12%). Around 1 in 10 (11%) say they’re not sure.

When asked in 2018 as the reforms were being implemented, pastors were slightly more optimistic. Half (49%) said they didn’t expect any impact, but 26% thought they would see a positive effect on their church’s finances.

This year, pastors of larger churches, those with attendance of 250 and more, are more likely to say the tax reform has positively impacted their congregation (20%) than pastors of churches with 50 to 99 in attendance (10%) and those with fewer than 50 (7%).

“There are no signs the 2018 tax reform created continued income growth for churches,” noted McConnell.

Aaron Earls is online editor of Facts & Trends and a writer for LifeWay Christian Resources.

Methodology:
The phone survey of 1,000 Protestant pastors was conducted from Aug. 30 to Sept. 24, 2019. The calling list was a stratified random sample drawn from a list of all Protestant churches. Quotas were used for church size.

Each interview was conducted with the senior pastor, minister or priest of the church called. Responses were weighted by region to more accurately reflect the population. The completed sample is 1,000 surveys. The sample provides 95% confidence that the sampling error does not exceed plus or minus 3.2%. Margins of error are higher in sub-groups

Comparisons are also made to the following telephone surveys using the same methodology:

  • 1,002 pastors conducted Nov. 5-12, 2009
  • 1,000 pastors conducted March 1-9, 2010
  • 1,000 pastors conducted Oct. 7-14, 2010
  • 1,002 pastors conducted Jan. 17-27, 2011
  • 1,000 pastors conducted May 18-25, 2011
  • 1,000 pastors conducted May 23-31, 2012
  • 1,000 pastors conducted Sept. 11-18, 2014
  • 1,000 pastors conducted Jan. 8-22, 2016
  • 1,000 pastors conducted Aug. 30 – Sept.18, 2017

1,000 pastors conducted Aug. 29 – Sept. 11, 2018

Download the research

 

The New Australian Dream

McCrindle - Mon, 02/12/2019 - 1:35pm

The post The New Australian Dream appeared first on McCrindle.

Methodology

Pew Research - Tue, 26/11/2019 - 9:47am

The American Trends Panel (ATP), created by Pew Research Center, is a nationally representative panel of randomly selected U.S. adults. Panelists participate via self-administered web surveys. Panelists who do not have internet access at home are provided with a tablet and wireless internet connection. The panel is being managed by Ipsos. Data in this report […]

The post Methodology appeared first on Pew Research Center.

Acknowledgments

Pew Research - Tue, 26/11/2019 - 9:47am

This report is made possible by The Pew Charitable Trusts. This report is a collaborative effort based on the input and analysis of the following individuals. Find related reports online at: pewresearch.org/science. Primary research team Cary Funk, Director, Science and Society Research Brian Kennedy, Senior Researcher Courtney Johnson, Research Associate Meg Hefferon, Research Analyst Cary […]

The post Acknowledgments appeared first on Pew Research Center.

U.S. Public Views on Climate and Energy

Pew Research - Tue, 26/11/2019 - 5:49am

A majority of U.S. adults say they are taking at least some specific action in their daily lives to protect the environment, though Democrats and Republicans remain at ideological odds over the causes of climate change and the effects of policies to address it.

The post U.S. Public Views on Climate and Energy appeared first on Pew Research Center.

Appendix D: Older people, more affluent tend to have fewer hardships using mobile devices

Pew Research - Thu, 21/11/2019 - 4:02am

In this report, we explored demographic differences associated with mobile phone use and hardships. To do this, we used a hierarchical linear regression to predict the total number of hardships people experience, controlling for other factors that affect mobile phone use. We used Stata’s mixed function to estimate a weighted, mixed-effect linear model with random […]

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