Would HKUPOP conduct popularity surveys on Anson Chan and Regina Ip?
The general practice of HKUPOP is to begin monitoring the
popularity of government officials once they are appointed and stop
once they leave office. This applies to Chris Patten, CH Tung, Anson
Chan and Regina Ip. Nevertheless, counting on POP tracking surveys
alone, these people may be included in our surveys via the following
Be included in our regular surveys of cross-strait political figures
if they have become national leaders, and if they are popular enough
according to our nomination surveys;
Become councillors and be included in our regular surveys of various
kinds of councillors;
Become popular enough to be included in our regular survey of local
Be included in our election surveys because they may participate in
certain elections, including the election of the Chief
These surveys, however, are much less frequent and shallow compared to
our regular surveys of incumbent government officials. They are
therefore of less study value.
It should be pointed out, however, that POP may be commissioned any
time to study the popularity of these public figures, according to our
prescribed service policy. In all such projects, we require full
autonomy and independence in their design and operation, and we would
release our findings for public consumption upon completion of the
(First release: Supplementary section of our press release of 11 July
Popularity survey of principal officials under the accountability system
In advanced democratic countries, the popularity of their principal officials is the crux of all opinion polls. Although the accountability system of the HKSAR Government was established in July 2002, HKUPOP has measured the ratings of the three Secretaries of Departments since January 2001, and then for all the Directors of Bureaux since June 2002. In September 2002, we also started to conduct surveys on the support rate of all principal officials, and to measure and release the popularity of our principal officials as frequently as we could, using our limited resources. First of all, we look at the development of the survey for Secretaries of Departments.
- For the rating survey of the Secretaries of Departments, in between January to November 2001, the frequency of the survey was conducted at an irregular basis. From January 2002 onwards, the survey is conducted once every month. For the support rates of the Secretaries based on people's hypothetical vote of confidence, the survey was conducted once every three months from September 2002 to December 2003. Then it was changed to once every two months from February 2004 to December 2005. From January 2006 onwards, the survey is conducted once every month.
- The wordings used in the questionnaire are: "Please use a scale of 0-100 to rate your extent of support to Chief Secretary for Administration XXX/Financial Secretary YYY/Secretary for Justice ZZZ, with 0 indicating absolutely not supportive, 100 indicating supportive and 50 indicating half-half. How would you rate XXX/YYY/ZZZ?". For the support rates of Secretaries, the wordings are "If you had the right to vote on the reappointment or dismissal of XXX/YYY/ZZZ as the Chief Secretary for Administration/Financial Secretary/Secretary for Justice tomorrow, how would you vote?"
- Regarding the sample size, ever since the beginning, the sample size of surveys has been set at slightly over 1,000.
The development of the survey for Directors of Bureaux is as follows:
- For the rating survey of the Directors of Bureaux, in between June 2002 to December 2005, the frequency was once every month. From January 2006 onwards, the survey is conducted once every two months. For the support rates of Directors of Bureaux, the frequency was once every three months from September 2002 to December 2003. Then from February 2004 onwards, the survey is conducted once every two months.
- Similar to the popularity survey of the Secretaries of Departments, that of the Directors of Bureaux also includes the questions of rating and hypothetical voting. The wordings used in the questionnaire are: "Please use a scale of 0-100 to rate your extent of support to XXX, with 0 indicating absolutely not supportive, 100 indicating supportive and 50 indicating half-half. How would you rate XXX?" and "If you had the right to vote on the reappointment or dismissal of XXX as YYYYYY tomorrow, how would you vote?" However, the two questions are asked in different surveys separately.
- Regarding the sample size, from the beginning to December 2005, the sample size of the surveys has been set at slightly over 1,000. However, from 2006 onwards, this series of questions only uses sub-samples of the tracking surveys concerned, and the sample size for each question also varies.
All the findings from our surveys on "popularity of principal officials" have been released online through our HKU POP Site.
(First release: Supplementary section of our press release of 16