HKU POP releases second part of Macau annual survey 2013Back

 
Press Release on January 9, 2014

| Abstract | Background Information | Latest Figures | Commentary |Future Releases (Tentative) |
| Detailed Findings (Macau annual survey) |


Abstract

Hong Kong and Macau differ a lot, the figures of their public sentiments cannot be directly compared. However, within the survey series conducted by the Public Opinion Programme (POP) at the University of Hong Kong in Macau, they themselves can be compared. Between 6 and 12 December 2013, POP interviewed 511 Macau people by means of a random telephone survey conducted by real interviewers, and found that using a one-in-three choices method, livelihood issues continue for many years to be Macau people’s most concerned issues followed by economic and then political issues. However, Macau people’s concern for livelihood issues has gone up to a new high of recent years, while that of economic issues drops to a new low. The ratings of all 4 core social indicators (namely, freedom, stability, prosperity and democracy) have gone down significantly, with “democracy” reaching record low since 2001 and remains at the bottom. Compared to one year ago, people's net trusts in the Macau SAR and Central Government have significantly dropped, to positive 39 and 40 percentage points respectively. As for the confidence indicators, including people's confidence in the future of Macau and China, and that in “one country, two systems”, all of them have remained highly positive, but their net values have dropped significantly to positive 57, 69 and 56 percentage points respectively. Among them, the net trusts towards Macau’s future and “one country, two systems” have reached all-time low since the handover in 1999. In terms of ethnic identity, people’s identification ratings of “Macau citizen” and “Chinese citizen” have also plunged compared to one year ago, at 7.9 and 7.6 marks respectively. The maximum sampling error of all percentage figures is +/-4 percentage points at 95% confidence level, while the sampling error of rating figures and net values need another calculation. The response rate of the survey is 70%.

Points to note:

[1] The address of the “HKU POP SITE” is http://hkupop.hku.hk, journalists can check out the details of the survey there.
[2] The sample size of this survey is 511 successful interviews, not 511 x 69.6% response rate. In the past, many media made this mistake.
[3] The maximum sampling error of all percentages is +/-4 percentage points at 95% confidence level. “95% confidence level” means that if we were to repeat a certain survey 100 times, using the same questions each time but with different random samples, we would expect 95 times getting a figure within the error margins specified. When quoting these figures, journalists can state “sampling error of rating not more than +/-0.2, of percentages not more than +/-4% and of net values not more than +/-7% at 95% confidence level”.
[4] Because of sampling errors in conducting the survey(s) and the rounding procedures in processing the data, the figures cannot be too precise, and the totals may not be completely accurate. Therefore, when quoting percentages of the survey(s), journalists should refrain from reporting decimal places, but when quoting the rating figures, one decimal place can be used.
[5] The data of this survey is collected by means of random telephone interviews conducted by real interviewers, not by any interactive voice system (IVS). If a research organization uses “computerized random telephone survey” to camouflage its IVS operation, it should be considered unprofessional.



Background Information

Since 1992, POP has been conducting onsite studies in Macau in order to study the development of its public sentiment. Among them, most are related to election studies and opinion testing. Up to now, these research projects include Macau Legislative Assembly Exit Polls (1992, 1996, 2001, 2005 and 2009), Macau handover and year-end review surveys (since 1999), and other feature studies

 

After the sovereignty of Hong Kong and Macau returned to China, the development of public sentiment in the two cities has become more inter-related. One can expect that Hong Kong, Shenzhen, Macau, Zhuhai and the whole Pearl River Delta will soon merge to become one entity both economically and culturally. Therefore, in the long run, establishing a common social indicator in this region is a “multiple-win situation” for all. POP’s research in Macau in the last 20 years is aimed at gradually building up a regional system on scientific public opinion polling, and to provide useful data for comparative studies in future.



Latest Figures

POP today releases via the “POP SITE” the second part of the Macau annual survey 2013. The first part of survey results were released on December 19, 2013. As a general practice, all figures have been weighted according to figures obtained from the Statistics and Census Service of Macau government regarding the gender-age distribution of the Macau population in 2012 year-end. Herewith the contact information for the latest survey:

Date of survey

Sample base

Overall response rate

Maximum sampling error of percentages[6]

6-12/12/2013

511

69.6%

+/-4%

[6] Calculated at 95% confidence level using full sample size. “95% confidence level” means that if we were to repeat a certain survey 100 times, using the same questions each time but with different random samples, we would expect 95 times getting a figure within the error margins specified.

 

I. Appraisal of society’s conditions

 

Recent figures of Macau people’s appraisal of society’s conditions are summarized as follows:

 

Date of survey

29-30/12/09

24-26/1/11

17/11-9/12/11

23-28/12/12

6-12/12/13

Latest change

Sample base[7]

506

508

1,022

519

511

--

Overall response rate

77.6%

72.7%

71.7%

70.6%

69.6%

--

Latest finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding and error[8]

--

Most concerned with livelihood problems[9]

58%

62%

--

72%

73+/-4%

+1%

Most concerned with economic problems

35%

33%

--

21%

20+/-4%

-1%

Most concerned with political problems

4%

3%

--

4%

4+/-2%

--

Degree of prosperity

7.50

7.13

7.51

7.65

7.41+/-0.16

-0.24[10]

Degree of stability

7.39

7.04

7.28

7.61[10]

7.20+/-0.17

-0.41[10]

Degree of freedom

7.08

6.79

6.92

7.12[10]

6.82+/-0.17

-0.30[10]

Degree of democracy

5.85

5.61

5.98

5.97

5.49+/-0.19

-0.48[10]

Credibility rating of the local news media in general

5.73

5.44

--

5.79

5.37+/-0.20

-0.42[10]

[7] The frequency of this series of questions is different for different questions. Comparisons, if made, should be synchronized using the same intervals.
[8] All error figures in the table are calculated at 95% confidence level. “95% confidence level” means that if we were to repeat a certain survey 100 times, using the same questions each time but with different random samples, we would expect 95 times getting a figure within the error margins specified. Media can state "sampling error of various ratings not more than +/-0.20 and sampling error of percentages not more than +/-4% at 95% confidence level" when quoting the above figures. The error margin of previous survey can be found at the POP Site.
[9] The wordings used before the 2012 survey were “social problems” and “social condition”. We take them to mean the same as “livelihood problems” and “livelihood condition” in the survey context.
[10] Changes between 2011-2012/2012-2013 have gone beyond the sampling errors at the 95% confidence level, meaning that they are statistically significant prima facie. However, whether numerical differences are statistically significant or not is not the same as whether they are practically useful or meaningful.

 

Latest survey showed that 73% of the respondents were most concerned with livelihood problems, 20% with economic problems, while 4% attached their greatest concern to political problems. Regarding the core social indicators, latest results showed that, on a scale of 0-10, Macau's degree of “prosperity” scored the highest rating with 7.41 marks, followed by “stability” with 7.20 marks, and then “freedom” and “democracy”, with 6.82 and 5.49 marks respectively. As for people’s appraisal of Macau’s new media, on a scale of 0-10, the latest credibility rating of the Macau’s news media in general was 5.37 marks.

 

II. Trust and confidence indicators

 

Recent popularity figures of Macau SAR and Beijing Central and people’s confidence in the future as well as “one country, two systems” are summarized below:

 

Date of survey

29-30/12/09

24-26/1/11

17/11-9/12/11

23-28/12/12

6-12/12/13

Latest Change

Sample base [11]

506

508

1,022

519

511

--

Overall response rate

77.6%

72.7%

71.7%

70.6%

69.6%

--

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding & error [12]

--

Trust in MSAR Government[13]

64%

50%

55%

65%[14]

58+/-4%

-7%[14]

Distrust in MSAR Government[13]

10%

19%

16%

11%[14]

19+/-3%

+8%[14]

Net trust

54%

31%

39%

54%[14]

39+/-7%

-15%[14]

Mean value[13]

3.7+/-0.1
(Base=489)

3.4+/-0.1
(Base=496)

3.5+/-0.1
(Base=569)

3.6+/-0.1
(Base=513)

3.4+/-0.1
(Base=501)

-0.2[14]

Trust in Beijing Government[13]

73%

69%

62%

60%

56+/-4%

-4%

Distrust in Beijing Government[13]

4%

6%

13%

11%

16+/-3%

+5%[14]

Net trust

69%

63%

49%

49%

40+/-7%

-9%[14]

Mean value[13]

4.1+/-0.1
(Base=472)

3.9+/-0.1
(Base=482)

3.7+/-0.1
(Base=556)

3.7+/-0.1
(Base=475)

3.5+/-0.1
(Base=468)

-0.2[14]

Confidence in Macau’s future

84%

81%

83%

82%

76+/-4%

-6%[14]

No-confidence in Macau’s future

10%

11%

11%

12%

19+/-3%

+7%[14]

Net confidence

74%

70%

72%

70%

57+/-7%

-13%[14]

Confidence in China’s future

89%

92%

87%

87%

81+/-3%

-6%[14]

No-confidence in China’s future

4%

3%

9%

8%

12+/-3%

+4%[14]

Net confidence

85%

89%

78%

79%

69+/-6%

-10%[14]

Confidence in “one country, two systems”

87%

84%

85%

82%

75+/-4%

-7%[14]

No-confidence in “one country, two systems”

7%

10%

12%

12%

19+/-3%

+7%[14]

Net confidence

80%

74%

73%

70%

56+/-7%

-14%[14]

[11] The frequency of this series of questions is different for different questions. Comparisons, if made, should be synchronized using the same intervals. 
[12] All error figures in the table are calculated at 95% confidence level. “95% confidence level” means that if we were to repeat a certain survey 100 times, using the same questions each time but with different random samples, we would expect 95 times getting a figure within the error margins specified. Media can state "sampling error of percentages not more than +/-4% and of net values not more than +/-7% at 95% confidence level" when quoting the above figures. The error margin of previous survey can be found at the POP Site.
[13] Collapsed from a 5-point scale. The mean value is calculated by quantifying all individual responses into 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 marks according to their degree of positive level, where 1 is the lowest and 5 the highest, and then calculate the sample mean.
[14] Changes between 2011-2012/2012-2013 have gone beyond the sampling errors at the 95% confidence level, meaning that they are statistically significant prima facie. However, whether numerical differences are statistically significant or not is not the same as whether they are practically useful or meaningful.

 

Latest survey revealed that 58% of the respondents trusted the Macau SAR Government, 56% trusted the Beijing Central Government. The mean scores of these trust indicators are 3.4 and 3.5 respectively, meaning in between “quite trust” and “half-half” in general. On the other hand, 76% of the respondents had confidence in Macau’s future and 81% had confidence in China’s future, while 75% of the respondents were confident in “one country, two systems”.

 

III. Ethnic identity

 

Recent figures on Macau people’s ratings on two separate identities are tabulated as follows:

Date of survey

29-30/12/09

24-26/1/11

17/11-9/12/11

23-28/12/12

6-12/12/13

Latest change

Sample base

506

508

1,022

519

511

--

Overall response rate

77.6%

72.7%

71.7%

70.6%

69.6%

--

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding and error[15]

--

Strength rating of being “Macau citizens”

8.0

7.8

8.0

8.3[16]

7.9+/-0.2

-0.4[16]

Strength rating of being “citizens of PRC”

8.5

8.1

7.9

8.1

7.6+/-0.2

-0.5[16]

[15] All error figures in the table are calculated at 95% confidence level. “95% confidence level” means that if we were to repeat a certain survey 100 times, using the same questions each time but with different random samples, we would expect 95 times getting a figure within the error margins specified. Media can state “sampling error of strength ratings not more than +/-0.2 at 95% confidence level” when quoting the above figures. The error margin of previous survey can be found at the POP Site.
[16] Changes between 2011-2012/2012-2013 have gone beyond the sampling errors at the 95% confidence level, meaning that they are statistically significant prima facie. However, whether numerical differences are statistically significant or not is not the same as whether they are practically useful or meaningful.

 

The above figures were collected from independent rating questions, but not involving the dichotomy issue of “Macau citizens” and “Chinese citizens”. Latest findings showed that the identity ratings for “Macau citizens” and “citizens of PRC” were 7.9 and 7.6 marks respectively.

 


Commentary

 

Robert Ting-Yiu Chung, Director of Public Opinion Programme, observed, “Hong Kong and Macau differ a lot, the figures of their public sentiments cannot be directly compared. However, within the survey series conducted by POP in Macau, they themselves can be compared. According to our annual survey completed at the end of last year, using a one-in-three choices method, livelihood issues continue for many years to be Macau people’s most concerned issues followed by economic and then political issues. However, Macau people’s concern for livelihood issues has gone up to a new high of recent years, while that of economic issues drops to a new low. The ratings of all 4 core social indicators (namely, freedom, stability, prosperity and democracy) have gone down significantly, with ‘democracy’ reaching record low since 2001 and remains at the bottom. Compared to one year ago, people's net trusts in the Macau SAR and Central Government have significantly dropped, to positive 39 and 40 percentage points respectively. As for the confidence indicators, including people's confidence in the future of Macau and China, and that in ‘one country, two systems’, all of them have remained highly positive, but their net values have dropped significantly to positive 57, 69 and 56 percentage points respectively. Among them, the net trusts towards Macau’s future and ‘one country, two systems’ have reached all-time low since the handover in 1999. In terms of ethnic identity, people’s identification ratings of ‘Macau citizen’ and ‘Chinese citizen’ have also plunged compared to one year ago, at 7.9 and 7.6 marks respectively.”



Future Releases (Tentative)

  • January 13, 2014 (Monday) 1pm to 2pm: People’s expectation of CE’s Policy Address

  • January 14, 2014 (Tuesday) 1pm to 2pm: Popularity of CE and Principal Officials

  • January 16, 2014 (Thursday) 1pm to 2pm: Policy Address Instant Poll


| Abstract | Background Information | Latest Figures | Commentary |Future Releases (Tentative) |
| Detailed Findings (Macau annual survey) |