Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

FP5

European Social Survey - Development and Round 1

Project ID: HPSE-CT-2001-00088
Funded under: FP5-HUMAN POTENTIAL

Abstract

The European Social Survey (ESS) is a new multi-country biennial survey, the first round of which comprised 22 nations. It has two main aims. First, it seeks to measure, monitor and interpret changing public attitudes within Europe and the way in which they interact with Europe�s changing institutions. Second, it seeks to advance and consolidate improved methods of cross-national quantitative measurement within Europe and beyond.
Drawing on the best examples at national and international level, the ESS has already produced a rich, publicly available dataset. The format in which it is available makes it easily accessible not only to the social science and policy communities in Europe and beyond, but also to the mass media and other interested users via the World Wide Web. The dataset is freely available without charge to any interested user.
The ESS has been designed as a regular biennial study that will measure change over time. The questionnaire is in two parts. A core section comprises a stable set of key measures designed to monitor critical aspects of social change within and between countries over time. A second section comprises rotating modules, the content of which changes at each round in response to a Europe-wide competition for proposals. In Round 1 these modules were on 'Attitudes to Immigration' and 'Citizenship, Involvement and Democracy' respectively.
Round 1 has provided benchmark measures which, when supplemented by data from future rounds, will provide evidence on the speed and direction of change in underlying public values over time. Even in an increasingly well-documented age, such data have hitherto been far from widely available. In addition, the ESS has attempted to pioneer and �prove� a standard of methodology for cross-national attitude surveys that has hitherto not been considered achievable.

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