HKU POP SITE releases results on Legislative Council election againBack

 
Press Release on August 28, 2008

| Abstract | Latest Figures | Commentary |
| News about POP |Detailed Findings (Second survey of 2008 Legislative Council election ) |


Abstract

The Public Opinion Programme at the University of Hong Kong interviewed 1,996 registered voters between 18 and 23 August, by means of random telephone surveys conducted by real interviewers. The surveys find that compared to figures registered in a similar survey in 2004, the basic structure of voters' concern in terms of the 6 attributes prompted in the survey has remained basically unchanged. In terms of priority, they are people's livelihood, economic development, political issues, candidates' council experience, candidates' relationship with the Central Government, and candidates' general popularity. However, in terms of absolute importance, voters are giving more importance to economic development and relationship with the Central Government, and less importance to political issues, council experience and general popularity. This probably reflects changes in Hong Kong's political ecology in the past 4 years. Regarding variations across different geographical constituencies, voters in Hong Kong Island and New Territories West show significantly lower concern for candidates' political demands, while the importance placed on candidates' council experience has dropped significantly among voters in Kowloon West and New Territories West. For Kowloon East, the importance placed on candidates' relationship with Central government rose while that on candidates' council experience dropped. On the other hand, significant increases in the importance placed on candidates' livelihood policies are only found among voters in Kowloon West and New Territories East. The sampling errors of the percentages registered fall between +/-1 and 6%, while the response rate of the survey is 70%.

Points to note:

* The address of the "HKU POP SITE" is http://hkupop.hku.hk, journalists can check out the details of the survey there.
* The sample size of this survey is 1,996 successful interviews, not 1,996 x 69.9% response rate. In the past, many media made this mistake.
* The maximum sampling error of all percentages is below +/- 6 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 percentages not more than +/-6% at 95% confidence level".
* 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

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. Sponsored surveys will be used exclusively by sponsors first, and then uploaded online for public consumption after the election. Unsponsored surveys will be released to the general public immediately after they are conducted. On August 5, POP made the first public release, today is the second one, with the following contact information:

Date of survey

Overall sample size
(registered voters)

Effective response rate

Sampling error of percentages*

18-23/8/08

1,996

69.9%

+/-2%

* 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.

Regarding the voters' considerations in casting their votes, the surveys on August 18-23 showed that, 87% of the voters interviewed claimed they would consider the livelihood policies proposed by candidates, such as problems on housing, education, medical, environment and public order, etc., important. Besides, 77% and 60% said economy-related policies and political policies proposed by candidates, such as constitutional affairs, democratic development, etc., were important to their voting decision respectively. The corresponding figures for candidates' experiences in the Council and relations with the Central Government were 50% and 48%, while that for candidates' fame was 32%. Major findings are summarized below, together with parallel figures obtained in the last Legislative Council election of 2004:

Territory-wide survey

Date of survey

10-14/8/04

18-23/8/08

Latest change

Sample base (registered voters)

1,817

1,996

--

Effective response rate

73.9%

69.9%

--

Sampling error of percentages (at 95% conf. level)*

+/-2%

+/-2%

--

Latest finding/sampling error

Finding

Finding

Error

 

Regarded candidates' livelihood policies important**

85%

87%

+/-2%

+2%

Regarded candidates' livelihood policies not important**

4%

4%

+/-1%

--

Regarded candidates' economic policies important**

74%

77%

+/-2%

+3%#

Regarded candidates' economic policies not important**

6%

6%

+/-1%

--

Regarded candidates' political policies important**

65%

60%

+/-2%

-5%#

Regarded candidates' political policies not important**

12%

13%

+/-2%

+1%

Regarded candidates' experiences important**

55%

50%

+/-2%

-5%#

Regarded candidates' experiences not important**

20%

22%

+/-2%

+2%

Regarded candidates' relations with the CPG important**

45%

48%

+/-2%

+3%#

Regarded candidates' relations with the CPG not important**

23%

22%

+/-2%

-1%

Regarded candidates' fame important**

35%

32%

+/-2%

-3%#

Regarded candidates' fame not important**

35%

33%

+/-2%

-2%

* "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.
** Collapsed from a 5-point scale.
# 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 or not is not the same as whether they are practically useful or meaningful.


Regarding the voters' considerations in casting their votes in individual geographical constituencies, the relevant survey results from August 18 to 23 revealed that, out of the 6 items we put to test, the livelihood policies proposed by candidates was the most important consideration factor while their fame was the least. The figures in each constituency are summarized as follows:

Hong Kong Island

Date of survey

10-14/8/04

18-23/8/08

Latest change

Sample base (registered voters)

282-289

357-360

--

Sampling error of percentages (at 95% conf. level)*

+/- 6%

+/-5%

--

Latest finding/sampling error

Finding

Finding

Error

 

Regarded candidates' livelihood policies important**

86%

89%

+/-3%

+3%

Regarded candidates' livelihood policies not important**

2%

4%

+/-2%

+2%

Regarded candidates' economic policies important**

75%

79%

+/-4%

+4%

Regarded candidates' economic policies not important**

7%

6%

+/-3%

-1%

Regarded candidates' political policies important**

71%

64%

+/-5%

-7%#

Regarded candidates' political policies not important**

7%

13%

+/-4%

+6%#

Regarded candidates' experiences important**

52%

50%

+/-5%

-2%

Regarded candidates' experiences not important**

23%

23%

+/-4%

--

Regarded candidates' relations with the CPG important**

48%

51%

+/-5%

+3%

Regarded candidates' relations with the CPG not important**

22%

21%

+/-4%

-1%

Regarded candidates' fame important**

39%

34%

+/-5%

-5%

Regarded candidates' fame not important**

33%

32%

+/-5%

-1%

* "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.
** Collapsed from a 5-point scale.
# 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 or not is not the same as whether they are practically useful or meaningful.


Kowloon West

Date of survey

10-14/8/04

18-23/8/08

Latest change

Sample base (registered voters)

225-227

390-395

--

Sampling error of percentages (at 95% conf. level)*

+/- 7%

+/-5%

--

Latest finding/sampling error

Finding

Finding

Error

 

Regarded candidates' livelihood policies important**

81%

87%

+/-3%

+6%#

Regarded candidates' livelihood policies not important**

4%

5%

+/-2%

--

Regarded candidates' economic policies important**

74%

77%

+/-4%

+3%

Regarded candidates' economic policies not important**

6%

7%

+/-3%

--

Regarded candidates' political policies important**

66%

61%

+/-5%

-5%

Regarded candidates' political policies not important**

15%

14%

+/-3%

-1%

Regarded candidates' experiences important**

58%

48%

+/-5%

-10%#

Regarded candidates' experiences not important**

18%

25%

+/-4%

+7%#

Regarded candidates' relations with the CPG important**

50%

49%

+/-5%

-1%

Regarded candidates' relations with the CPG not important**

19%

21%

+/-4%

+2%

Regarded candidates' fame important**

30%

34%

+/-5%

+4%

Regarded candidates' fame not important**

37%

35%

+/-5%

-2%

* "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.
** Collapsed from a 5-point scale.
# 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 or not is not the same as whether they are practically useful or meaningful.


Kowloon East

Date of survey

10-14/8/04

18-23/8/08

Latest change

Sample base (registered voters)

282-284

317-319

--

Sampling error of percentages (at 95% conf. level)*

+/- 6%

+/-6%

--

Latest finding/sampling error

Finding

Finding

Error

 

Regarded candidates' livelihood policies important**

84%

87%

+/-4%

+3%

Regarded candidates' livelihood policies not important**

4%

2%

+/-2%

-2%

Regarded candidates' economic policies important**

73%

77%

+/-5%

+4%

Regarded candidates' economic policies not important**

6%

5%

+/-2%

-1%

Regarded candidates' political policies important**

61%

59%

+/-6%

-2%

Regarded candidates' political policies not important**

11%

12%

+/-4%

+1%

Regarded candidates' experiences important**

49%

52%

+/-6%

+3%

Regarded candidates' experiences not important**

21%

20%

+/-4%

-1%

Regarded candidates' relations with the CPG important**

38%

46%

+/-6%

+8%#

Regarded candidates' relations with the CPG not important**

25%

22%

+/-5%

-3%

Regarded candidates' fame important**

37%

31%

+/-5%

-6%#

Regarded candidates' fame not important**

33%

29%

+/-5%

-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.
** Collapsed from a 5-point scale.
# 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 or not is not the same as whether they are practically useful or meaningful.


New Territories West

Date of survey

10-14/8/04

18-23/8/08

Latest change

Sample base (registered voters)

401-410

456-459

--

Sampling error of percentages (at 95% conf. level)*

+/- 5%

+/-5%

--

Latest finding/sampling error

Finding

Finding

Error

 

Regarded candidates' livelihood policies important**

87%

83%

+/-4%

-4%

Regarded candidates' livelihood policies not important**

3%

5%

+/-2%

+2%

Regarded candidates' economic policies important**

76%

75%

+/-4%

-1%

Regarded candidates' economic policies not important**

5%

6%

+/-2%

+1%

Regarded candidates' political policies important**

63%

56%

+/-5%

-7%#

Regarded candidates' political policies not important**

12%

13%

+/-3%

+1%

Regarded candidates' experiences important**

60%

52%

+/-5%

-8%#

Regarded candidates' experiences not important**

17%

21%

+/-4%

+4%

Regarded candidates' relations with the CPG important**

43%

44%

+/-5%

+1%

Regarded candidates' relations with the CPG not important**

26%

22%

+/-4%

-4%

Regarded candidates' fame important**

34%

33%

+/-4%

-1%

Regarded candidates' fame not important**

34%

34%

+/-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.
** Collapsed from a 5-point scale.
# 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 or not is not the same as whether they are practically useful or meaningful.


New Territories East

Date of survey

10-14/8/04

18-23/8/08

Latest change

Sample base (registered voters)

414-421

457-461

--

Sampling error of percentages (at 95% conf. level)*

+/- 5%

+/-5%

--

Latest finding/sampling error

Finding

Finding

Error

 

Regarded candidates' livelihood policies important**

85%

89%

+/-3%

+4%#

Regarded candidates' livelihood policies not important**

6%

2%

+/-1%

-4%#

Regarded candidates' economic policies important**

74%

77%

+/-4%

+3%

Regarded candidates' economic policies not important**

7%

6%

+/-2%

-1%

Regarded candidates' political policies important**

64%

62%

+/-5%

-2%

Regarded candidates' political policies not important**

12%

14%

+/-3%

+2%

Regarded candidates' experiences important**

55%

50%

+/-5%

-5%

Regarded candidates' experiences not important**

19%

23%

+/-4%

+4%

Regarded candidates' relations with the CPG important**

46%

49%

+/-5%

+3%

Regarded candidates' relations with the CPG not important**

22%

23%

+/-4%

+1%

Regarded candidates' fame important**

34%

30%

+/-4%

-4%

Regarded candidates' fame not important**

36%

35%

+/-4%

-1%

* "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.
** Collapsed from a 5-point scale.
# 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 or not is not the same as whether they are practically useful or meaningful.


Commentary

Robert Ting-Yiu Chung, Director of Public Opinion Programme, observed: 「Compared to figures registered in a similar survey in 2004, the basic structure of voters' concern in terms of the 6 attributes prompted in the survey has remained basically unchanged. In terms of priority, they are people's livelihood, economic development, political issues, candidates' council experience, candidates' relationship with the Central Government, and candidates' general popularity. However, in terms of absolute importance, voters are giving more importance to economic development and relationship with the Central Government, and less importance to political issues, council experience and general popularity. This probably reflects changes in Hong Kong's political ecology in the past 4 years. Regarding variations across different geographical constituencies, voters in Hong Kong Island and New Territories West show significantly lower concern for candidates' political demands, while the importance placed on candidates' council experience has dropped significantly among voters in Kowloon West and New Territories West. For Kowloon East, the importance placed on candidates' relationship with Central government rose while that on candidates' council experience dropped. On the other hand, significant increases in the importance placed on candidates' livelihood policies are only found among voters in Kowloon West and New Territories East.

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. According to schedule, our next release of regular survey findings will be August 29, 2008, Friday, between 1pm and 2pm, when the latest ratings of the top 10 political groups will be released. Then on September 2, 2008, Tuesday, between 1pm and 2pm, POP will release the latest figures on the popularity of SAR and Central Governments, and people's confidence in the future.

POP will also follow the rhythm of the WorldPublicOpinion.org (WPO) to globally release the Chinese versions of WPO's press releases regularly, via our "World Public Opinion Platform" accessible through our POP Site and the "Hong Kong People's Opinion Platform" at http://www.hkpop.hk.

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.


| Abstract | Latest Figures | Commentary |
| News about POP | Detailed Findings (Second survey of 2008 Legislative Council election ) |