HKU POP SITE releases survey on Chief Executive election for the first timeBack


Press Release on June 6, 2005
 

In 1996, the Public Opinion Programme (POP) at the University of Hong Kong conducted 5 rounds of surveys on the Chief Executive election, 4 of which were conducted after Tung Chee-hwa formally announced his intention to stand for the election. POP's operation in 1996 was as follows:



October 18	CH Tung announced his intention to stand for the election

October 23-24	POP conducted a survey on the 5 potential candidates

November 2	Preparatory Committee confirmed a list of 8 qualified candidates

November 6-7	POP conducted a survey on the 8 qualified candidates

November 15	400-person Selection Committee confirmed 3 candidates after voting,namely, CH Tung, TL Yang and Peter Woo

November 18-19	POP conducted a survey on the 3 final candidates

December 9	POP conducted the final pre-election survey on the 3 final candidates

December 11	Election of the CE by the Selection Committee

In the second CE election of 2002, Tung Chee-hwa obtained 706 nominations from the then 796-people Selection Committee, and therefore was elected unopposed. POP, therefore, did not conduct any CE election survey.

 

This year on May 25, Donald Tsang formally announced that he would stand for the CE election, and POP switched on our CE election polling routine. However, since we are not yet sure if this year's election flow will be more similar to that of 1996 or 2002, our operation will be adjusted as the actual situation unfolds. Since the present situation is similar to that of 1996, with more than one celebrity intending to compete, we will not cancel our operation as in 2002.

 

The survey released by POP today via the "HKU POP SITE" (http://hkupop.hku.hk) mainly requested respondents to rate the suitability of the 3 potential candidates widely reported by the media, with 0 indicating absolutely not suitable, 100 indicating absolutely suitable and 50 indicating half-half. In-depth demographic analyses are also presented, along with corresponding figures in 1996.

 

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. The contact information of the studies are tabulated as follows:

 
  1996 Survey 2005 Survey
 Date of survey 23-24/10/1996 1-3/6/2005
 Sample base 526 1,015
 Overall response rate 46.5% 65.6%
 Sampling error of percentages (at 95% conf. level)* +/- 4% +/- 3%
 Sampling error of ratings (at 95% conf. level)* Please refer to the relevant frequency tables

* "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.

 

The latest survey results obtained in 2005 are summarized below:

 
    Donald Tsang Lee Wing-tat Chim Pui-chung
  Sample base Rating Error* Recognition rate Rating Error* Recognition rate Rating Error* Recognition rate
 All respondents 1,015 77.6 +/-1.1 98.1% 39.0 +/-1.5 89.4% 29.6 +/-1.5 85.5%
 Political inclination - self-defined:
 Pro-democracy 305 73.8 +/-2.0 99.2% 47.0 +/-2.3 94.0% 30.0 +/-2.7 87.8%
 Pro-China 79 84.3 +/-3.6 99.1% 26.3 +/-5.6 95.7% 26.5 +/-5.4 94.5%
 Moderate 401 78.0 +/-1.6 100.0% 36.5 +/-2.3 92.5% 29.0 +/-2.3 89.1%
 No preference 186 79.8 +/-2.7 95.5% 36.3 +/-3.8 79.1% 30.4 +/-3.7 76.6%
 Gender
 Male 490 77.6 +/-1.5 97.9% 39.1 +/-2.2 91.7% 28.4 +/-2.1 89.5%
 Female 525 77.6 +/-1.6 98.3% 38.9 +/-2.1 87.2% 30.8 +/-2.1 81.7%
 Age
 18-29 209 74.8 +/-2.3 99.8% 43.6 +/-3.2 92.5% 35.7 +/-3.3 84.2%
 30-49 439 77.0 +/-1.7 98.5% 36.9 +/-2.1 93.5% 26.4 +/-2.2 90.5%
 50 or above 298 80.7 +/-2.1 97.0% 37.7 +/-3.1 82.8% 29.2 +/-2.8 81.6%
 Education Attainment
 Primary or below 156 82.8 +/-3.1 94.3% 41.6 +/-4.4 69.1% 33.2 +/-4.2 67.1%
 Secondary 552 78.1 +/-1.5 99.4% 37.4 +/-2.1 92.5% 29.7 +/-2.1 87.8%
 Tertiary or above 291 74.3 +/-1.8 99.7% 40.6 +/-2.3 96.0% 27.6 +/-2.5 92.6%
 Occupation
 Executives and professionals 239 75.3 +/-2.1 99.6% 40.4 +/-2.6 94.7% 27.6 +/-2.8 94.2%
 Clerical and service workers 225 75.8 +/-2.4 99.5% 38.5 +/-3.0 95.0% 29.9 +/-3.1 85.5%
 Production workers 89 81.0 +/-3.5 100.0% 36.7 +/-5.7 94.1% 25.7 +/-5.2 90.4%
 Students 81 72.4 +/-3.6 98.8% 46.4 +/-4.9 89.6% 38.4 +/-5.4 82.9%
 Housewives 166 78.3 +/-2.8 96.8% 36.2 +/-3.6 87.0% 28.2 +/-3.7 83.8%
 Class the family belonged to - self-defined:
 Middle or above 367 76.2 +/-1.8 99.6% 37.7 +/-2.2 94.8% 28.0 +/-2.3 92.4%
 Lower-middle or grassroots 610 78.2 +/-1.4 97.9% 40.0 +/-2.0 87.7% 30.5 +/-2.0 82.6%

* "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.

 

The corresponding survey in 1996 covered 5 possible candidates at that time, including Tung Chee-hwa, Yang Ti-liang, Peter Woo, Li Fook-sean and Garcia Arthur. Those 3 with the highest support ratings subsequently became final candidates. Their ratings then were as follows:

 
    Tung Chee-hwa Yang Ti-liang Peter Woo
  Sample base Rating Error* Recognition rate Rating Error* Recognition rate Rating Error* Recognition rate
 All respondents 526 65.7 +/-1.6 77.3% 61.3 +/-1.8 79.0% 56.1 +/-1.9 70.8%
 Gender
 Male 263 65.1 +/-2.4 81.8% 59.1 +/-2.8 83.3% 54.6 +/-2.6 75.5%
 Female 263 66.4 +/-2.2 72.8% 63.7 +/-2.3 74.7% 57.9 +/-2.6 66.1%
 Age
 18-29 141 64.2 +/-2.8 84.9% 61.8 +/-3.2 88.5% 56.8 +/-3.2 82.1%
 30-49 277 65.9 +/-2.2 80.9% 60.2 +/-2.5 82.7% 54.7 +/-2.7 71.9%
 50 or above 97 69.7 +/-3.9 59.4% 65.9 +/-5.2 59.3% 61.2 +/-4.3 55.3%
 Education Attainment
 Primary or below 120 64.7 +/-5.0 60.9% 65.0 +/-5.2 58.4% 52.5 +/-5.5 52.6%
 Secondary 303 65.7 +/-2.0 79.8% 62.0 +/-2.2 84.1% 56.9 +/-2.3 73.9%
 Tertiary or above 98 66.0 +/-3.1 89.2% 55.7 +/-4.2 88.2% 56.2 +/-3.9 83.1%
 Occupation
 Executives and professionals 105 65.0 +/-3.4 84.0% 56.4 +/-3.5 86.9% 52.5 +/-3.9 79.3%
 Clerical and service workers 133 65.1 +/-2.8 85.9% 63.5 +/-3.5 85.1% 56.7 +/-3.5 79.8%
 Production workers 74 62.9 +/-4.8 75.7% 58.8 +/-5.8 75.7% 51.2 +/-6.1 67.8%
 Students 42 65.8 +/-4.3 85.3% 63.6 +/-4.4 90.1% 59.1 +/-4.0 78.1%
 Housewives 84 67.2 +/-5.1 67.0% 64.3 +/-4.3 74.2% 59.9 +/-5.3 63.3%

* "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.

 

Our latest survey shows that Donald Tsang's suitability rating was 77.6 marks, while his recognition rate was 98%. Lee Wing-tat scored 39.0 marks with a recognition rate of 89%. Chim Pui-chung scored 29.6 marks with a recognition rate of 86%. During the same period in 1996, Tung Chee-hwa attained 65.7 marks with a recognition rate of 77%. Yang Ti-liang attained 61.3 marks with a recognition rate of 79%. Peter Woo attained 56.1 marks with a recognition rate of 71%. Li Fook-sean attained 50.8 marks with a recognition rate of 59%. Garcia Arthur scored 45.6 marks, but since he only attained a recognition rate of 30%, his ratings was not representative.

 

Basing on the results of these surveys, Robert Ting-Yiu Chung, Director of Public Opinion Programme, made the following analysis:

 

(1)

In terms of suitability of being the CE, Donald Tsang's ratings is way ahead of others across all categories, while Lee Wing-tat and Chim Pui-chung could not get one passing score. This is totally different from the situation in 1996, when Tung Chee-hwa, Yang Ti-liang, Peter Woo and Garcia Arthur all scored over 50 marks. This reflects that the brewing processes of the two elections are different, and that people's expectations on the CE have changed.

  

(2)

Among different sub-groups, Donald Tsang scored the highest among those who claimed themselves to be pro-China, apparently benefiting from the support of Beijing officials to Tsang. Lee Wing-tat scored the highest among those claimed to be pro-democratic, but still with 47 marks only. This shows that some pro-democratic camp's supporters also believed that Lee was not a suitable candidate.

  

(3)

Figures revealed that older respondents tended to support Tsang more, and the opposite holds for Lee. Seemingly Lee's supporters were more likely to be young people and students, who gave him around 45 marks. Ratings obtained by Chim were generally lower. Students gave him relatively higher marks, production workers gave him lower marks.

 

Robert Ting-Yiu Chung explained, "Basing on the present trend, even if Lee and Chim could obtain enough nominations and become CE candidates, rapid changes in the popularity structure are not likely to happen. However, if there is more than one candidate like in 1996, people will definitely pay more attention to the candidates' platform and ability, thereby increasing the reference value of opinion surveys. We will touch on the number of candidates and the election system in our next survey."

 

POP's normal practice is to release the results of our regular surveys every Tuesday at 2 pm via our POP Site, but because we have added releases on CE election, the date and time of our next release of regular survey findings has been changed to June 8, 2005, Wednesday, at 2 pm, we will release the latest ratings of the most well-known political groups. Then, on June 10, 2005, Friday, at 2 pm, the latest popularity figures of the Principal Officials will be released. Besides, the second round of survey on CE election will be released on June 13, 2005, Monday, at 2 pm. 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.