HKU POP releases popularity figures of Executive CouncillorsBack

 

Press Release on October 23, 2018

| Detailed Findings (Popularity of Executive Councillors) |

Special Announcements

1. From July 2017, apart from sampling landline numbers to conduct opinion surveys, the Public Opinion Programme (POP) of The University of Hong Kong has also added mobile numbers to the sampling frame. After three months of testing, in October 2017, POP formalized the use of mixed samples as its standard for regular opinion surveys using a landline and mobile sample ratio of 4 to 1. Starting from April 2018, POP further increased the proportion of mobile sample, which the landline and mobile sample ratio became 2 to 1. The figures released today by POP have already incorporated landline and mobile samples.

2. In September 2017, POP started to use “effective response rate” to report surveys’ contact information. In July 2018, POP further revised the calculation of effective response rate. Thus, the response rates before and after the change cannot be directly compared.

3. To facilitate academic study and rational discussion, POP has already released for public examination some time ago via the “HKU POP SITE” (http://hkupop.hku.hk) the raw data of regular rating surveys of current CE Carrie Lam, former CEs CH Tung, Donald Tsang and CY Leung, along with related demographics of respondents. Please follow normal academic standards when using or citing such data.

Abstract

POP conducted a double stage survey on the ratings of Executive Councillors in October by means of random telephone surveys conducted by real interviewers. The survey shows that compared to seven months ago, in terms of familiarity, all non-official Executive Councillors who were in the “top 5” list last time remain in the list. Among them, the ratings of Fanny Law and Arthur Li have increased while those of Joseph Yam, Ronny Tong and Regina Ip have decreased, but none of them have changed beyond sampling error. Meanwhile, the rating of Regina Ip as Executive Councillor is now at her record low since 2013. In terms of absolute ratings, only Joseph Yam on the “top 5” list scores more than 50 marks, at 54.7. In terms of relative rankings, Joseph Yam continues to rank first, Ronny Tong and Regina Ip swap positions to rank second and third, while Fanny Law and Arthur Li continue to rank fourth and fifth. It should be noted, however, that our list of “top 5” only includes non-official Councillors best known to the public, ranked according to their support ratings. Some of the other Councillors may well have very high or low support ratings, but because they are not the most well-known Councillors, they do not appear on the list by design. The maximum sampling error of all percentage figures is +/-4 percentage points at 95% confidence level, while that of rating figures is below +/-2.6 marks. The response rate of the rating survey is 65%.

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 the first stage naming survey on top 5 Executive Councillors is 1,002 successful interviews, not 1,002 x 46.8% response rate, while that of the second stage rating survey is 503 successful interviews, not 503 x 65.3% response rate. In the past, many media made this mistake.

[3] “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 +/-2.6 and sampling error of percentages not more than +/-4% 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.


Latest Figures

From July 2017, POP enhanced the previous weighting method that has been used for quite a few years. Apart from age, gender and education, economic activity group is now also taken into account when adjusting data. The latest figures released today have been rim-weighted according to figures provided by the Census and Statistics Department. The gender-age distribution of the Hong Kong population came from “Mid-year population for 2017”, while the educational attainment (highest level attended) distribution and economic activity status distribution came from “Women and Men in Hong Kong - Key Statistics (2018 Edition)”. In the past, the mobile sample would be rim-weighted according to the basic Public Sentiment Index (PSI) figures collected in the landline sample. In July 2018, POP further refined the weighting method. The landline sample and the mobile sample would no longer be processed separately. The mobile sample would also no longer be adjusted using the basic PSI figures collected in the landline sample. The overall effect is that the importance of the mobile sample would be increased. Herewith the contact information for the latest survey:

Date of survey

Sample size

Effective response rate

Maximum sampling error[6]

2-4/10/2018 (Naming survey)

1,002

46.8%

+/-3%

11-12/10/2018 (Rating survey)

503

65.3%

+/-2.6

[6] Errors are 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. Questions using only sub-samples would have bigger sampling error. Sampling errors of ratings are calculated according to the distribution of the scores collected.


The research design of our “Top 5 Executive Councillors” is similar to that of our “Top 10” series and is explained in detail under “Survey Method” in our web page. The top Councillors listed in our latest survey were all those who obtained the highest unprompted mentions in our first stage naming survey conducted in early October. In that survey, respondents could name, unaided, up to 5 non-official Executive Councillors whom they knew best. The findings of the naming survey are as follows:

Date of survey

5-8/9/16

20-24/2/17

1-6/9/17

5-6/3/18

2-4/10/18

Latest Change in Ranking

Sample base[7]

1,001

1,006

1,010

501

1,002

--

Response rate*

73.5%

70.8%

51.1%

57.7%

46.8%

--

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding & error [8]

--

Regina Ip

17%{1}

--[9]

22%{1}

23%{1}

18+/-3%{1}

--

Bernard Chan

3%{6}

5%{2}

14%{2}

9%{2}

11+/-3%{2}

--

Ronny Tong

--[9]

--[9]

9%{4}

4%{4}

7+/-2%{3}

↑1

Fanny Law

4%{3}

4%{3}

4%{5}

6%{3}

4+/-2%{4}

↓1

Joseph Yam

--[9]

--[9]

9%{3}

3%{6}

3+/-1%{5}

↑1

Arthur Li

4%{2}

3%{4}

3%{6}

3%{5}

2+/-1%{6}

↓1

Tommy Cheung

--[9]

2%{5}

1%{9}

1%{10}

2+/-1%{7}

↑3

Laura Cha

1%{9}

1%{9}

1%{8}

1%{9}

1+/-1%{8}

↑1

Ip Kwok-him

1%{8}

2%{7}

2%{7}

1%{8}

1+/-1%{9}

↓1

Kenneth Lau

--[9]

--[9]

1%{13}

<1%{13}

1+/-1%{10}

↑3

Lam Ching-choi

--[9]

--[9]

<1%{15}

--

<1+/-<1%{11}

--

Chow Chung-kong

<1%{14}

1%{12}

1%{10}

<1%{15}

<1+/-<1%{12}

↑3

Cheung Kwok-kwan

--[9]

--[9]

1%{12}

2%{7}

<1+/-<1%{13}

↓6

Jeffrey Lam

<1%{12}

2%{8}

<1%{16}

1%{11}

--

--

Wong Kwok-kin

--[9]

--[9]

1%{11}

1%{12}

--

--

Martin Liao

--[9]

1%{10}

<1%{14}

<1%{14}

--

--

Lam Woon-kwong

4%{4}

8%{1}

--[9]

--[9]

--[9]

--

Cheng Yiu-tong

3%{5}

2%{6}

--[9]

--[9]

--[9]

--

Cheung Chi-kong

2%{7}

1%{11}

--[9]

--[9]

--[9]

--

Anna Wu

<1%{11}

<1%{13}

--[9]

--[9]

--[9]

--

Cheung Hok-ming

1%{10}

<1%{14}

--[9]

--[9]

--[9]

--

Andrew Liao

<1%{13}

<1%{15}

--[9]

--[9]

--[9]

--

Wrong answer

17%

26%

7%

14%

12+/-3%

--

Don’t know/hard to say

66%

65%

65%

65%

68+/-4%

--

* “Overall response rate” was used before September 2017, thereafter, “effective response rate” was used. In July 2018, POP revised the calculation of effective response rate. Thus, the response rates before and after the change cannot be directly compared.

[7] Some surveys only use sub-samples of the tracking surveys concerned.

[8] All error figures in the table are calculated at 95% confidence level. “95% confidence level”, meaning 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% at 95% confidence level” when quoting the above figures. Numbers in square brackets { } indicates rankings in our naming survey. Councillors with the same recognition rate will be ranked according to the decimal place of the corresponding percentages. Please refer to the POP Site for detailed figures of the previous surveys. The error margin of previous surveys can also be found at the POP Site.

[9] Not a non-official Executive Councillor during the survey period.


The naming survey conducted in early October showed that Regina Ip was named most frequently with a recognition rate of 18%. Bernard Chan, Ronny Tong, Fanny Law, Joseph Yam and Arthur Li had recognition rates of 11%, 7%, 4%, 3% and 2%, and were ranked the 2nd to 6th. However, 12% made a wrong attempt at citing (non-official) Executive Councillors while 68% had no clue.

The 6 Councillors who were named most frequently then entered into the second stage rating survey. During the second stage rating survey conducted in mid-October, respondents were asked to rate each short-listed Councillor in turn using a 0-100 scale. 0 indicates absolutely no support, 100 indicates absolute support, and 50 means half-half. After calculation, the bottom 1 Councillor in terms of recognition rate was dropped; the remaining 5 were then ranked according to their support ratings attained to become the top 5 Executive Councillors. Recent ratings of the top 5 members of Executive Council are summarized as follows:

Date of survey

12-14/9/16

1-5/3/17

12-15/9/17

15-20/3/18

11-12/10/18

Latest change

Sample base

584-624

563-704

780-851

567-643

503

--

Response rate*

70.2%

71.7%

57.6%

62.5%

65.3%

--

Finding / Recognition rate

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding and error [10]

Recognition
rate

--

Joseph Yam

--[14]

--[14]

57.9{1}

58.2{1}

54.7+/-2.2{1}

81.7%

-3.5[12] [13]

Ronny Tong

--[14]

--[14]

49.2{2}

49.1{3}

46.7+/-2.5{2}

80.8%

-2.4

Regina Ip

49.4{2}

--[14]

47.3{3}

49.7{2}[12]

46.0+/-2.3{3}

89.5%

-3.7[12] [13]

Fanny Law

40.6{4}[12]

44.4{2}[12]

41.7{4}

41.1{4}

42.3+/-2.4{4}

79.5%

+1.2

Arthur Li

37.3{5}[12]

39.4{5}

36.7{5}[12]

37.8{5}

40.4+/-2.5{5}

77.4%

+2.6

Bernard Chan

54.6[11]

50.8[11] [12]

50.1[11]

49.4[11]

49.3+/-2.6[11]

66.0%

-0.1

Tommy Cheung

--[14]

40.5{4}

--

--

--

--

--

Lam Woon-kwong

55.6{1}[12]

51.2{1}[12]

--[14]

--[14]

--[14]

--

--

Cheng Yiu-tong

44.4{3}

42.2{3}

--[14]

--[14]

--[14]

--

--

* “Overall response rate” was used before September 2017, thereafter, “effective response rate” was used. In July 2018, POP revised the calculation of effective response rate. Thus, the response rates before and after the change cannot be directly compared.

[10] All error figures in the table are calculated at 95% confidence level. “95% confidence level”, meaning 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 +/-2.6 marks at 95% confidence level” when quoting the above figures. Numbers in square brackets { } indicates rankings. The error margin of previous survey can be found at the POP Site.

[11] Recognition rate fell outside top 5 during rating stage, so per poll rating and related changes are presented only for rough reference.

[12] Such changes 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 is not the same as whether they are practically useful or meaningful, and different weighting methods could have been applied in different surveys.

[13] Such changes have gone beyond the sampling errors at the 95% confidence level because of a change in the weighting method. If the new weighting method was used on the previous dataset, the changes would not have gone beyond the sampling errors.

[14] Not a non-official Executive Councillor during the survey period.


The latest rating survey conducted in mid-October showed that Joseph Yam was the most popularly supported non-official Executive Councillor, attaining 54.7 marks. The 2nd went to Ronny Tong with 46.7 marks. The 3rd to 5th ranks went to Regina Ip, Fanny Law and Arthur Li with 46.0, 42.3 and 40.4 marks respectively. The mean score obtained by these top 5 non-official Executive Councillors was 46.0 marks. For this latest survey, Bernard Chan obtained a support rating of 49.3 marks, but he was dropped due to his relatively low recognition rate. The overall ratings ranked according to results obtained over the past four surveys are tabulated as follows:

Date of survey

1-5/3/17

12-15/9/17

15-20/3/18

11-12/10/18

No. of times on top 5

Average rating [15]

Overall ranking [16]

Fanny Law

44.4

41.7

41.1

42.3

4

42.4

1

Arthur Li

39.4

36.7

37.8

40.4

4

38.6

2

Joseph Yam

--[17]

57.9

58.2

54.7

3

56.9

3

Ronny Tong

--[17]

49.2

49.1

46.7

3

48.3

4

Regina Ip

--[17]

47.3

49.7

46.0

3

47.6

5

Lam Woon-kwong

51.2

--[17]

--[17]

--[17]

1

51.2

6

Cheng Yiu-tong

42.2

--[17]

--[17]

--[17]

1

42.2

7

Tommy Cheung

40.5

--

--

--

1

40.5

8

[15] “Average rating” is the average of all ratings obtained by Executive Councillors over the past 4 surveys.

[16] “Overall ranking” is first determined by their number of times on top 5, and then their average ratings.

[17] Not a non-official Executive Councillor during the survey period.


The overall rankings in the past four surveys showed that among the current non-official Executive Councillors, only Fanny Law and Arthur Li have been on the list for four times, with average ratings of 42.4 and 38.6 marks respectively. Joseph Yam, Ronny Tong and Regina Ip have been on the list for three times, with average ratings of 56.9, 48.3 and 47.6 marks. Lam Woon-kwong, Cheng Yiu-tong and Tommy Cheung have been on the list once with respective ratings of 51.2, 42.2 and 40.5.

Opinion Daily

In January 2007, POP opened a feature page called “Opinion Daily” at the “POP Site”, to record significant events and selected polling figures on a day-to-day basis, in order to let readers judge by themselves the reasons for the ups and downs of different opinion figures. In July 2007, POP collaborated with Wisers Information Limited whereby Wisers supplies to POP each day starting from July 24, a record of significant events of that day, according to the research method designed by POP. These daily entries would be uploaded to “Opinion Daily” as soon as they are verified by POP.

For the polling items covered in this press release, the previous survey was conducted from March 15 to 20, 2018 while the latest survey was conducted from October 11 to 12, 2018. During this period, herewith the significant events selected from counting newspaper headlines and commentaries on a daily basis and covered by at least 25% of the local newspaper articles. Readers can make their own judgment if these significant events have any impacts to different polling figures.

12/10/18

The returning officer declares Lau Siu-lai’s nomination for Legislative Council Kowloon West by-election invalid.

10/10/18

Chief Executive Carrie Lam delivers the 2018 Policy Address.

28/9/18

Price Indices of Private Domestic Property fall for the first time in 29 months.

24/9/18

An order banning the Hong Kong National Party’s operation is gazetted by the government.

22/9/18

The Hong Kong Section of Express Rail Link will be launched on September 23.

17/9/18

The traffic is paralyzed in the first working day after Super Typhoon Mangkhut hit Hong Kong.

10/8/18

Buildings near the construction site of Exhibition Centre Station of MTR Shatin to Central Link are found to be affected by land subsidence.

9/8/18

Buildings near the construction site of To Kwa Wan Station are found to be affected by land subsidence.

13/7/18

Housing Authority suggests setting the price of Home Ownership Scheme flats to 52% of market value and tightening resale restrictions.

28/6/18

The Executive Council approves three new initiatives on housing.

6/6/18

Dishonest practices were exposed in the coupling of steel bars in Hung Hom Station at the Shatin to Central Link.

26/4/18

The Task Force on Land Supply commences public consultation.

Commentary

Note: The following commentary was written by Research Manager of POP, Frank Lee.

The latest “top 5 Executive Councillors” survey shows that compared to seven months ago, in terms of familiarity, all non-official Executive Councillors who were in the “top 5” list last time remain in the list. Among them, the ratings of Fanny Law and Arthur Li have increased while those of Joseph Yam, Ronny Tong and Regina Ip have decreased, but none of them have changed beyond sampling error. Meanwhile, the rating of Regina Ip as Executive Councillor is now at her record low since 2013. In terms of absolute ratings, only Joseph Yam on the “top 5” list scores more than 50 marks, at 54.7. In terms of relative rankings, Joseph Yam continues to rank first, Ronny Tong and Regina Ip swap positions to rank second and third, while Fanny Law and Arthur Li continue to rank fourth and fifth. It should be noted, however, that our list of “top 5” only includes non-official Councillors best known to the public, ranked according to their support ratings. Some of the other Councillors may well have very high or low support ratings, but because they are not the most well-known Councillors, they do not appear on the list by design. As for the reasons affecting the ups and downs of these figures, we leave it to our readers to form their own judgment using detailed records displayed in our “Opinion Daily”.

Future Release(Tentative)

  • October 30, 2018 (Tuesday) 12pm to 2pm: Popularity of CE and HKSAR Government, Second follow-up survey of Policy Address