HKU POP SITE releases findings of the follow-up surveys on District Council Election and Legislative Council By-election Back


Press Release on December 21, 2007
 

| Special Announcement | Latest Figures | Commentary | News about POP | About HKUPOP |
| Detailed Findings (Follow-up Survey on the Legislative Council By-election) |
| Detailed Findings (Exit Poll of 2007 Legislative Council By-election ) |
| Detailed Findings (Follow-up Survey on the 2007 District Councils Election) |
| Detailed Findings (Exit Poll of 2007 District Council Election) |

Special Announcement
 

The Public Opinion Programme (POP) of the University of Hong Kong today releases on schedule via the "HKU POP SITE" (http://hkupop.hku.hk) the findings of follow-up surveys on District Council election and Legislative Council by-election for the Hong Kong Island Geographical Constituency. Besides, the exit poll results of the two elections have also been uploaded onto the POP Site for public consumption. These figures may be able to explain the relationship between the election results and people's aspirations for democracy.

Latest Figures
 

The findings of the follow-up surveys on District Council election and Legislative Council by-election for the Hong Kong Island Geographical Constituency released by POP today have been weighted according to provisional figures obtained from the Census and Statistics Department regarding the gender-age distribution of the Hong Kong population in mid-2007. Herewith the contact information for the latest survey:

 Date of survey  Overall sample size   Response rate  Sampling error of percentages*
 11-14/12/2007  1,011   65.1%   +/- 3%
* 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 sample error. Sampling errors of ratings are calculated according to the distribution of the scores collected.
 

Whenever there are large-scale elections, POP would conduct regular surveys to track opinion changes. On election days, POP would also conduct exit polls to study voter behaviour and motivation. After elections, POP would also conduct follow-up polls as a final conclusion to the election survey series. Major findings of the follow-up survey on the District Council election are summarized below, together with parallel figures obtained in the last follow-up survey in 2003:

 

Date of survey

10-14/12/2003

11-14/12/2007

Latest Change

Sample base

1,059

1,011

--

Overall response rate

63.5%

65.1%

--

Sampling error of percentages
(at 95% confidence level)*

+/-3%

+/-3%

--

Finding for each question / Sampling error*

Finding

Finding

Sampling error

--

Overall electoral arrangement: Satisfaction rate**

^

73%

+/-3%

--

Overall electoral arrangement: Dissatisfaction rate**

^

7%

+/-2%

--

Perceived the DC election to be corruption-free

71%

74%

+/-3%

+3%

Perceived the DC election not to be corruption-free

6%

8%

+/-2%

+2%

Proportion of respondents who knew which candidate in their constituency was elected

67%

72%

+/-3%

+5%

Proportion of respondents who did not know which candidate in their constituency was elected

33%

28%

+/-3%

-5%

Election results of respondents' constituency: Satisfaction rate**

53%

63%

+/-3%

+10%

Election results of respondents' constituency: Dissatisfaction rate **

9%

16%

+/-2%

+7%

Support rate of appointed seats

29%

29%

+/-3%

--

Opposition rate of appointed seats

43%

47%

+/-3%

+4%

* "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 +/-3% at 95% confidence level" when quoting the above figures.
** Collapsed from a 5-point scale.
^ In 2003's survey, only registered voters were asked the overall electoral arrangement, hence these figures cannot be directly compared with those registered in 2007. The satisfaction rate of the overall electoral arrangement in 2003 was 74% while the dissatisfaction rate was 6% and the base was 738.
 

Results of the follow-up survey on District Council election showed that, 73% of the respondents were satisfied with the overall arrangement on the election day. Meanwhile, 74% considered this year's District Council election to be corruption-free. With respect to the election results, 72% of the respondents knew which candidate in their constituency was elected as one of the new District Council members, and 63% were satisfied with such results. Besides, 29% of the respondents supported the appointment system in District Council whereas 47% opposed such a system. 

 

Do you know if the elected candidate at your district belongs to the pro democracy camp, pro China camp or others?

 

Pro democracy camp

25%

Pro China camp

18%

Others

22%

Don't know / forgot

36%

Total

100%

As far as you know, are there any appointed seats in next District Council?

 

Yes

30%

No

14%

Don't know

56%

Total

100%

 
The survey also showed that, 25% of the elected candidates at respondents' districts belonged to the pro democracy camp and 18% belonged to the pro China camp while 22% came from others. Besides, 30% said there were appointed seats in next District Council while 14% held an opposite view. 

Major findings of the follow-up survey on the Legislative Council by-election for Hong Kong Island Geographical Constituency are summarized below, together with parallel figures obtained in the last three follow-up surveys in 1998, 2000 and 2004:
 

Date of survey

27-29/5/1998

18-20/9/2000

18-21/10/2004

11-14/12/2007

Latest change

Sample base

1,029

1,052

1,011

1,011

--

Overall response rate

50.0%

59.0%

63.3%

65.1%

--

Sampling error of percentages
(at 95% confidence level)*

+/-3%

+/-3%

+/-3%

+/-3%

--

Finding for each question / Sampling error*

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Sampling error

--

Election results: Satisfaction rate**

70%

44%

43%

63%

+/-3%

+20%

Election results: Dissatisfaction rate **

5%

13%

24%

18%

+/-2%

-6%

Proportion of respondents who perceived the LC by-election to be corruption-free

69%

61%

68%

73%

+/-3%

+5%

Proportion of respondents who did not perceive the LC by-election to be corruption-free

6%

11%

13%

10%

+/-2%

-3%

Overall electoral arrangement: Satisfaction rate**

--

--

40%

58%

+/-3%

+18%

Overall electoral arrangement: Dissatisfaction rate**

--

--

34%

6%

+/-2%

-28%

Perceived Central Gov't had intervened in LC by-election

--

--

34%

27%

+/-3%

-7%

Perceived Central Gov't had not intervened in LC by-election

--

--

48%

58%

+/-3%

+10%

* "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 +/-3% at 95% confidence level" when quoting the above figures.
** Collapsed from a 5-point scale.
 
The follow-up survey on LC by-election showed that, 63% of the respondents were satisfied with the election results while 18% showed dissatisfaction. Besides, 73% considered this by-election to be corruption-free while 10% held an opposite view. Results also showed that, 58% of the respondents were satisfied with the overall arrangement on the election day whereas only 6% showed discontent. Besides, 27% perceived that Central Government had intervened in this LC by-election whilst those who did not thought so accounted to 58%.
 


Commentary


Robert Ting-Yiu Chung, Director of Public Opinion Programme, gives the following analysis on the two follow-up surveys: "According to our post-election surveys, almost two-thirds of the general public said they were satisfied with the results of the two elections, almost three-quarters thought they were corruption-free. As regards the overall arrangement on the election days, almost three-quarters were satisfied with that of the District Council election, while almost 60% were satisfied with that of the Legco by-election. These figures show that people are quite positive about the elections, and also better than before. There are, however, also some negative feelings, as our surveys find that almost half opposed the existence of appointed seats in the District Councils, while more than a quarter said the Central Government had intervened in the Legco by-election. The former figure is slightly higher than that registered four years ago, while the latter is significantly lower than that registered three years ago after the Legco election."

News about POP

POP's normal practice is to release the results of our regular surveys every Tuesday afternoon via our POP Site, except during public holidays, each time with a forecast of the items to be released in the next 7 days. As next Tuesday is a public holiday, POP Site will release our survey result on December 27, 2007, Thursday, between 1pm and 2pm, when the latest findings of people's opinions towards ethnic identity will be released. Then on December 28, 2007, Friday, between 1pm and 2pm, when the latest popularity figures of CE Donald Tsang and the HKSAR Government will be released.

Our general practice is to answer all questions on the research design of the surveys published in the POP Site as soon as we receive them, but we will not further comment on the findings. We welcome questions for follow-up purpose, please email them to us at <[email protected]>. 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 POP, is responsible for everything posted herewith, except for column articles which represent the stand of their authors.

Starting from January 2006, we have included in our regular press releases a small educational section for the purpose of general civic education, so that we can share our experience with the general public. The subject of our education section today is "About HKUPOP".


About HKUPOP

Whenever there are large-scale elections, HKUPOP will conduct various surveys to track opinion changes. The research team will also conduct exit polls on election day to study voter behaviour and motivation. Since the handover, the research team has conducted different surveys, like pre-election surveys, rolling polls, exit polls and follow-up surveys, for different elections including District Council elections and Legislative Council elections. The development of District Council election and Legislative Council election surveys is as follows:

I) District Council election surveys

a) Pre-election surveys

  • POP has conducted pre-election surveys on District Council elections in 1994, 1999, 2003 and 2007. There are in total four rounds in each pre-election survey. The first two rounds are usually conducted in September and October respectively while the third and fourth rounds are both conducted in November.

  • Questions used in the four waves of pre-election surveys are, "Are you a registered voter?", "Do you plan to vote in the District Council election this November?", "Which political camp do you incline to identify yourself with?", "What is your main consideration in selecting a candidate?", "Which problem do you think the new District Council members need to tackle first?" and "What would be your critical consideration when you vote?". Since October 2003, two more questions related to the appointment system of District Council have been added in the second round survey. The question wordings used in the questionnaire are, "Do you know there is any appointed member(s) in the coming District Council?" and "Do you agree there should be appointed members in the District Council?". One more new question has also been added in the third round survey, which is "Do you know which political camps are running for the election at your district?".

  • Before September 2003, the sample size of the District Council election surveys was set at slightly over 500. After that, it was then increased to at least 1,000. The survey findings of 2003 District Council election have been released via HKU POP Site.

b) Follow-up surveys

  • Follow-up surveys are conducted several weeks after the election day in 2003 and 2007 to act as a final conclusion to this survey series. The main purpose is to gauge people's opinions on the electoral arrangement, election results, allocation of appointed seats and so on.

  • Core questions asked in the follow-up survey include "Are you satisfied with the overall arrangement of the recent District Council election, like the location of polling station, polling hours, voter guidelines, etc.?", "Are you satisfied with the election results of your constituency?", "Do you know which candidate in your constituency was elected as one of the new District Council members?", "Do you think this year's District Council election was corruption-free?" and "Do you agree there should be appointed members in the District Council?". Since December 2007, two new questions have been introduced and they are "Do you know if the elected candidate at your district belongs to the pro democracy camp, pro China camp or others?" and "As far as you know, are there any appointed seats in the next District Council?".

  • Regarding the sample size, from the beginning up to now, the sample size is set slightly over 1,000.

II) Legislative Council election surveys

a) Rolling surveys

  • POP has conducted rolling surveys on Legislative Council elections since 1995. The rolling poll starts about a month before the election day and is conducted every day. Data are to be analyzed per 5 days and 3 days.

  • Questions used in the rolling surveys are "Will you vote in the coming Legislative Council election/in the coming Legislative Council by-election on XXX?" and "In the forthcoming Legislative Council direct election, in fact, there are several lists (candidates) as follows. Which list (candidate) you tend to support?/If there were a LC by-election tomorrow, which candidate would you vote for?"

  • Regarding the sample size, from the beginning up to now, the sample size per day is set not less than 170 and it increases as it approaches the election day. 

b) Follow-up surveys

  • POP has conducted follow-up surveys on Legislative Council elections several weeks after the election day in 1998, 2000 and 2004 to act as a final conclusion to this survey series. There was no exception to the LC by-elections in 2000 and 2007.

  • Questions used in the follow-up surveys are "Are you satisfied with the direct election results on XXX/by-election result?" and "Do you think this year's LC election/LC by-election is corruption-free?". Since December 2004, two new questions, i.e. "Are you satisfied with the overall arrangement of the LC election/by-election, like the location of polling station, polling hours, voter guidelines, etc.?" and "Do you think the Beijing Central Government has intervened in the LC election/by-election?" have been introduced.

  • Regarding the sample size, from the beginning up to now, the sample size is set slightly over 1,000.

| Special Announcement | Latest Figures | Commentary | News about POP | About HKUPOP |
| Detailed Findings (Follow-up Survey on the Legislative Council By-election) |
| Detailed Findings (Exit Poll of 2007 Legislative Council By-election ) |
| Detailed Findings (Follow-up Survey on the 2007 District Councils Election) |
| Detailed Findings (Exit Poll of 2007 District Council Election) |