HKU POP SITE releases findings of the latest annual June Fourth surveyBack


Press Release on May 31, 2005
 

The Public Opinion Programme (POP) at the University of Hong Kong today releases on schedule via the "HKU POP SITE" (http://hkupop.hku.hk) the findings of the latest annual June Fourth survey. As a general practice, all figures have been weighted according to the gender-age distribution of the Hong Kong population obtained from the Population Census, and are summarized as follows:

 
 Date of survey 25-29/5/01 14-16/5/02 15-20/5/03 18-20/5/04 21-24/5/05 Latest change
 Sample base 1,055 1,009 1,067 1,039 1,001 --
 Overall response rate 69.4% 63.6% 65.1% 62.3% 59.0% --
 Sampling error of ratings (at 95% conf. level)* +/- 1.8 +/- 1.8 +/- 1.6 +/- 1.8 +/- 1.6 --
 Sampling error of percentages (at 95% conf. level)* +/- 3% +/- 3% +/- 3% +/- 3% +/- 3% --
 Proportion of respondents believing:
 The Beijing students did the right thing 37% 38% 46% 42% 46% +4%
 The Beijing students did the wrong thing 21% 19% 15% 19% 18% -1%
 The Chinese Government did the right thing 14% 14% 13% 10% 13% +3%
 The Chinese Government did the wrong thing 56% 53% 62% 67% 62% -5%
 There should be a reversion of the official stand on the incident 40% 39% 47% 54% 56% +2%
 There should not be a reversion of the official stand on the incident 26% 27% 24% 23% 21% -2%
 China's human right condition had been improved since 1989 65% 74% 80% 70% 79% +9%
 China's human right condition had been worsened since 1989 6% 4% 4% 8% 3% -5%
 China's human right condition would be improved after 3 years 58% 65% 71% 63% 68% +5%
 China's human right condition would be worsened after 3 years 5% 3% 4% 4% 4% --
 Hong Kong people had a responsibility to instigate the development of democracy in China 72% 68% 70% 71% 75% +4%
 Hong Kong people had no responsibility to instigate the development of democracy in China 15% 15% 16% 16% 13% -3%
 Hong Kong people had a responsibility to instigate the economic development in China 79% 72% 72% 76% 82% +6%
 Hong Kong people had no responsibility to instigate the economic development in China 11% 12% 15% 13% 11% -2%
 Hong Kong people should put more effort on instigating the economic development than democracy in China 50% 39% 41% 44% 43% -1%
 Hong Kong people should put more effort on instigating the development of democracy than economy in China 16% 17% 28% 24% 24% --
 China should emphasize more on the economic development 58% 47% 46% 50% 46% -4%
 China should emphasize more on the development of democracy 15% 16% 26% 23% 26% +3%
 The Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movement in China ("the Alliance") should be disbanded 14% 18% 17% 16% 19% +3%
 The Alliance should not be disbanded 42% 40% 43% 52% 47% -5%
 Popularity rating of the Alliance 46.2 47.9 47.5 49.2 46.4 -2.8

* "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.

 

This year's survey findings revealed that 46% of the respondents believed that the Beijing students did the right thing in 1989, while 18% believed that they did the wrong thing. Meanwhile, with regard to the way the Chinese Government handled the matter at that time, 13% regarded it as correct and 62% regarded it as wrong.

 

The findings also showed that 56% of the respondents supported a reversion of the official stand on the incident while 21% did not. Regarding the human right condition in China, 79% of the respondents believed that China's human right condition has been improved since 1989, and 68% anticipated that China's human right condition will be improved after 3 years.

 

Moreover, 75% of the respondents believed that Hong Kong people had a responsibility to instigate the development of democracy in China, whereas on the economic aspect, 82% believed that Hong Kong people had such a responsibility. When comparing democracy and economic development, 43% of the respondents believed Hong Kong people should put more effort on instigating the economic development in China, while 24% of the respondents put more weight on the development of democracy. Furthermore, 46% believed that China should emphasize more on her economic development, while 26% believed that China should emphasize more on the development of democracy.

 

Finally, regarding the Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movement in China ("the Alliance"), 19% of the respondents said the Alliance should be disbanded, 47% said no. The latest popularity rating of the Alliance in late May was 46.4 marks.

 

With regard to these results, Robert Ting-Yiu Chung, Director of Public Opinion Programme analyzed, "This is our 13th anniversary survey on June Fourth, people's opinion has become fairly settled in recent years. People are basically sympathetic to the Beijing students, and criticize the Central Government for making a wrong move in 1989. However, most people believe China's human right condition has improved, and will further improve. Most people take it to be Hong Kong people's responsibility to instigate economic and democratic development in China, although more opt for economic development, at a ratio of 82% to 75%. In recent years, more and more people are calling for a reversion of the official stand on the incident. It now stands at 56% which is a record high after the handover. People's support rating for the Alliance, however, has remained below 50 marks after 2000. All in all, it seems that the people of Hong Kong are wishing for a reversion of the official stand in order to take away the historical burden which stands between Hong Kong and Mainland China."

 

POP's normal practice is to release the results of our regular surveys every Tuesday at 2 pm via our POP Site, except during public holidays, each time with a forecast of the items to be released in the forthcoming week. We will review and adjust this operation regularly. Since a new series of survey on potential candidates for the coming Chief Executive election will be released for the first time on June 6, 2005, Monday, at 2 pm, our regular survey will be postponed to June 8, 2005, Wednesday, at 2 pm, when we will release the latest ratings of the most well-known political groups.

 

Shall anyone have any question regarding the research design of the surveys published in the POP Site, members of the POP Team will be happy to answer them, but we will not further comment on the findings. Shall any person or journalist have any other questions, please email them to us at <[email protected]>. The Director of Public Opinion Programme would answer them as soon as possible. We will keep such an arrangement under constant review, suggestions most welcome. Please note that everything carried in the POP Site does not represent the stand of the University of Hong Kong. Dr Robert Ting-Yiu Chung, Director of Public Opinion Programme, is responsible for everything posted herewith, except for column articles which represent the stand of their authors.