HKU POP releases popularity figures of CE and principal officialsBack

 
Press Release on May 17, 2011

| Abstract | Latest Figures | Indepth Analysis | Opinion Daily | Commentary | Future Release (Tentative) |
| Detailed Findings (Popularity of Chief Executive/Popularity of Principal Officials) |


Abstract

The Public Opinion Programme (POP) at the University of Hong Kong interviewed 1,038 Hong Kong people between May 3 to 10 by means of a random telephone survey conducted by real interviewers. The survey shows that the popularity figures of CE Donald Tsang have not changed much compared to two weeks ago. His net popularity now stands at negative 28 percentage points. Indepth analyses show that those of age 18 to 49 give significantly lower ratings to CE, they are also less supportive of his appointment as CE. As for FS John Tsang, his support rating continues to drop, seemingly on a one way ticket to another record low since he became FS. The net approval rate of John Tsang now stands at negative 12 percentage points. Compared to the positive 34 percentage points registered before the Budget, it has plunged 46 percentage points in three months. As for the other Secretaries of Departments, compared to one month ago, the overall popularity figures of CS Henry Tang and SJ Wong Yan-lung have not changed much. Their net popularity now stands at positive 10 and positive 61 percentage points. Wong Yan-lung remains to be the most popular Secretary of Department. As for the Directors of Bureaux, compared to one month ago, the approval rates of 8 among 11 incumbent Directors have gone up, 2 have gone down while 1 remains unchanged. Among them, Secretary for Security Ambrose Lee and Secretary for the Environment Edward Yau have registered changes in approval rates beyond sampling error, up by 8 and 5 percentage points respectively. Only Secretary for Education Michael Suen and Secretary for Home Affairs Tsang Tak-sing register negative popularity, at negative 21 and 9 percentage points respectively. According to POP's standard, Wong Yan-lung and Ambrose Lee now fall under the category of"ideal" performers. Carrie Lam now falls under the category of"successful" performer. The performance of Matthew Cheung, York Chow, Eva Cheng, Edward Yau, Ceajer Chan, Henry Tang, Stephen Lam, Tsang Tak-sing, John Tsang and Michael Suen can be labeled as"mediocre", while that of Denise Yue can be labeled as"inconspicuous", and that of Donald Tsang"depressing". No official falls under the category of"disastrous". The maximum sampling error of all approval and disapproval rates is +/-4 percentage points at 95% confidence level, while the sampling error of rating figures needs another calculation. The response rate of the 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 this survey is 1,038 successful interviews, not 1,038 x 65.3% response rate. In the past, many media made this mistake.
[3] The maximum sampling error of all approval and disapproval rates is +/-4 percentage points at 95% confidence level, while the sampling error of rating figures needs another calculation. "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 various ratings not more than +/-1.8 and sampling error of percentages not more than +/-4% at 95% confidence level".
[4] When quoting percentages of this survey, journalists should refrain from reporting decimal places, but when quoting the rating figures, one decimal place can be used, in order to match the precision level of the figures.
[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

POP today releases on schedule via POP SITE the latest popularity figures of CE Donald Tsang, Secretaries of Departments and Directors of Bureaux under the accountability system. All the figures 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 2010 year-end. Herewith the contact information for the latest survey:

Date of survey

Overall sample size

Response rate

Maximum sampling error of percentages[6]

3-10/5/2011

1,038

65.3%

+/-3%

[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.

As different questions involve different sub-samples, the sample errors will vary accordingly. The table below briefly shows the relationship between sample size and maximum sampling errors for the readers to capture the corresponding changes:

Sample size
(total sample or sub-sample)

Sampling error of percentages[7]
(maximum values)

Sample size
(total sample or sub-sample)

Sampling error of percentages[7]
(maximum values)

1,300

+/- 2.8 %

1,350

+/- 2.7 %

1,200

+/- 2.9 %

1,250

+/- 2.8 %

1,100

+/- 3.0 %

1,150

+/- 3.0 %

1,000

+/- 3.2 %

1,050

+/- 3.1 %

900

+/- 3.3 %

950

+/- 3.2 %

800

+/- 3.5 %

850

+/- 3.4 %

700

+/- 3.8 %

750

+/- 3.7 %

600

+/- 4.1 %

650

+/- 3.9 %

500

+/- 4.5 %

550

+/- 4.3 %

400

+/- 5.0 %

450

+/- 4.7 %

[7] Based on 95% confidence interval.

"Maximum sampling errors" occur when survey figures are close to 50%. If the figures are close to 0% or 100%, the sampling error will diminish accordingly. The sampling errors of ratings, however, will depend on the distribution of the raw figures. Since January 2007, POP lists out the sampling errors of all survey figures in detail and explain them in due course. Recent popularity figures of CE Donald Tsang are summarized as follows:

Date of survey

1-9/3/11

14-23/3/11

4-12/4/11

22/4-2/5/11

3-10/5/11

Latest change

Sample base

1,003

1,006

1,005

1,072

1,038

--

Overall response rate

65.4%

63.1%

68.5%

65.9%

65.3%

--

Latest finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding & error[8]

--

Rating of CE Donald Tsang

51.2[9]

50.2

51.0

50.4

50.0+/-1.3

-0.4

Vote of confidence in CE Donald Tsang

31%

33%

31%

29%

30+/-3%

+1%

Vote of no confidence in CE Donald Tsang

54%

52%

57%[9]

59%

58+/-3%

-1%

Net approval rate

-23%

-19%

-26%

-30%

-28%

+2%

[8] All error figures in the table are calculated 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. Media can state "sampling error of rating not more than +/-1.3, sampling error of percentages not more than +/-3% at 95% confidence level" when quoting the above figures. The error margin of previous survey can be found at the POP Site.
[9] 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.

Figures on the latest popularity ratings of the three Secretaries of Departments under the accountability system are summarized below:

Date of survey

7-11/2/11

23/2/11

1-9/3/11

4-12/4/11

3-10/5/11

Latest change[10]

Sample base[10]

566-574

1,031

539-567

543-561

547-588

--

Overall response rate

67.1%

72.8%

65.4%

68.5%

65.3%

--

Latest finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding & error[11]

--

Ratings of CS Henry Tang

48.7[12]

--

51.2[12]

50.3

50.6+/-1.6

+0.3

Vote of confidence in CS Henry Tang

34%[12]

--

39%[12]

30%[12]

34+/-4%

+4%

Vote of no confidence in CS Henry Tang

27%[12]

--

23%

23%

24+/-4%

+1%

Net approval rate

7%

--

16%

7%

10%

+3%

Ratings of FS John Tsang

55.4

52.4

46.6[12]

46.0

45.4+/-1.8

-0.6

Vote of confidence in FS John Tsang

51%[12]

36%

31%[12]

24%[12]

25+/-4%

+1%

Vote of no confidence in FS John Tsang

17%[12]

22%

37%[12]

38%

37+/-4%

-1%

Net approval rate

34%

14%

-6%

-14%

-12%

+2%

Ratings of SJ Y.L. Wong

59.6

--

61.1

59.6[12]

59.8+/-1.4

+0.2

Vote of confidence in SJ Y.L.Wong

60%

--

61%

65%

66+/-4%

+1%

Vote of no confidence in SJ Y.L.Wong

7%

--

3%[12]

4%

5+/-2%

+1%

Net approval rate

53%

--

58%

61%

61%

--

[10] The frequency of this series of questions is different for different questions, and also different from that of CE popularity ratings. Comparisons, if made, should be synchronized using the same intervals. Starting from 2011, these questions only uses sub-samples of the tracking surveys concerned, the sample size for each question also varies.
[11] All error figures in the table are calculated 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. Media can state "sampling error of various ratings not more than +/-1.8, sampling error of percentages not more than +/-4% at 95% confidence level" when quoting the above figures. The error margin of previous survey can be found at the POP Site.
[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 or not is not the same as whether they are practically useful or meaningful.

Figures on the latest popularity ratings of Directors of Bureaux under the accountability system are summarized below:

Date of survey

1-9/3/11

4-12/4/11

3-10/5/11

Latest change

Total sample size[13]

528-568

474-575

528-609

--

Overall response rate

65.4%

68.5%

65.3%

--

Sample base for each question/ Percentage of answer

Base

%

Base

%

Base

%& error[14]

--

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Security Ambrose Lee

548

67%

524

58%[15]

594

66+/-4%

+8%[15]

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Security Ambrose Lee

548

9%

524

10%

594

9+/-2%

-1%

Net approval rate

--

58%

--

48%

--

57%

+9%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Development Carrie Lam

553

45%[15]

549

48%

528

51+/-4%

+3%

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Development Carrie Lam

553

15%

549

15%

528

14+/-3%

-1%

Net approval rate

--

30%

--

33%

--

37%

+4%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Labour and Welfare Matthew Cheung

537

42%[15]

522

42%

594

43+/-4%

+1%

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Labour and Welfare Matthew Cheung

537

16%

522

22%[15]

594

22+/-3%

--

Net approval rate

--

26%

--

20%

--

21%

+1%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Food and Health York Chow[16]

568

51%

527

43%[15]

544

42+/-4%

-1%

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Food and Health York Chow

568

23%

527

24%

544

29+/-4%

+5%[15]

Net approval rate

--

28%

--

19%

--

13%

-6%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Transport and Housing Eva Cheng[16]

528

36%

518

41%[15]

602

42+/-4%

+1%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Transport and Housing Eva Cheng

528

23%

518

20%

602

21+/-3%

+1%

Net approval rate

--

13%

--

21%

--

21%

--

Vote of confidence in Secretary for the Environment Edward Yau

552

36%

519

34%

609

39+/-4%

+5%[15]

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for the Environment Edward Yau

552

21%

519

22%

609

18+/-3%

-4%[15]

Net approval rate

--

15%

--

12%

--

21%

+9%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury Ceajer Chan

558

35%

543

36%

581

36+/-4%

--

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury Ceajer Chan

558

11%

543

13%

581

15+/-3%

+2%

Net approval rate

--

24%

--

23%

--

21%

-2%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Stephen Lam

561

31%

529

30%

545

33+/-4%

+3%

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Stephen Lam

561

26%[15]

529

27%

545

26+/-4%

-1%

Net approval rate

--

5%

--

3%

--

7%

+4%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for the Civil Service Denise Yue

568

28%

521

28%

583

30+/-4%

+2%

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for the Civil Service Denise Yue

568

14%

521

16%

583

13+/-3%

-3%

Net approval rate

--

14%

--

12%

--

17%

+5%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Home Affairs Tsang Tak-sing

567

29%

575

30%

560

28+/-4%

-2%

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Home Affairs Tsang Tak-sing

567

32%[15]

575

29%

560

37+/-4%

+8%[15]

Net approval rate

--

-3%

--

1%

--

-9%

-10%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Education Michael Suen

548

24%[15]

557

22%

529

24+/-4%

+2%

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Education Michael Suen

548

49%[15]

557

44%[15]

529

45+/-4%

+1%

Net approval rate

--

-25%

--

-22%

--

-21%

+1%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Rita Lau[17]

558

25%[15]

474

30%[15]

--

--

--

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Rita Lau

558

14%

474

14%

--

--

--

Net approval rate

--

11%

--

16%

--

--

--

[13] Starting from 2006, these questions only uses sub-samples of the tracking surveys concerned, the sample size for each question also varies.
[14] All error figures in the table are calculated 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. Media can state "sampling error of percentages not more than +/-4% at 95% confidence level" when quoting the above figures. The error margin of previous survey can be found at the POP Site.
[15] 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.
[16] In one decimal place, the approval rate of Secretary for Food and Health York Chow is 41.7%, while that of Secretary for Transport and Housing Eva Cheng is 41.6%.
[17] Rita Lau resigned from the post of Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development on April 8. Our survey on her popularity also stopped on that day.

The latest survey showed that, CE Donald Tsang scored 50.0 marks, and 30% supported him as the Chief Executive, thus his net approval rate is negative 28%. Meanwhile, the corresponding ratings of CS Henry Tang, FS John Tsang and SJ Wong Yan-lung were 50.6, 45.4 and 59.8 marks, and 34%, 25% and 66% would vote for their reappointment correspondingly. Their net approval rates are positive 10%, negative 12% and positive 61% respectively.

As for the Directors of Bureaux, results revealed that the top approval rate fell to Secretary for Security Ambrose Lee, attaining 66%. His net approval rate is positive 57%. The 2nd to 5th places belonged to Secretary for Development Carrie Lam, Secretary for Labour and Welfare Matthew Cheung, Secretary for Food and Health York Chow and Secretary for Transport and Housing Eva Cheng, with approval rate 51%, 43%, 42% and 42% respectively and their net approval rates are positive 37%, 21%, 13% and 21% respectively. Secretary for the Environment Edward Yau, Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury Ceajer Chan, Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Stephen Lam, Secretary for the Civil Service Denise Yue, Secretary for Home Affairs Tsang Tak-sing and Secretary for Education Michael Suen ranked 6th to 11th, as they gained 39%, 36%, 33%, 30%, 28% and 24% support from the public respectively. Their corresponding net approval rates are positive 21%, positive 21%, positive 7%, positive 17%, negative 9% and negative 21%. In other words, Ambrose Lee and Carrie Lam scored approval rates of over 50% among all Directors of Bureaux.


Indepth Analysis

In the survey, we also asked respondents for their age. If they were reluctant to give their exact age, they could give us a range. According to their answers, we grouped them into 18-29, 30-49, and 50 years or older. Herewith further analysis of Donald Tsang's rating and support rate by respondents' age:
Date of survey: 3-10/5/11

18-29

30-49

50 or above

Overall sample

Rating of CE Donald Tsang

48.4+/-2.5
(198)

48.7+/-2.0
(405)

51.9+/-2.2
(413)

50.0+/-1.3
(1,016)

Vote of confidence/ no confidence
in CE Donald Tsang

Support

34+/-7%
(67)

26+/-4%
(105)

32+/-5%
(134)

30+/-3%
(307)

Oppose

60+/-7%
(120)

60+/-5%
(240)

55+/-5%
(231)

58+/-3%
(591)

Don't know/
hard to say

6+/-3%
(13)

13+/-3%
(53)

13+/-3%
(53)

12+/-2%
(118)

Total

100%
(200)

100%
(398)

100%
(418)

100%
(1,016)



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 of some items was conducted from April 4 to 12, 2011 while this survey was conducted from May 3 to 10, 2011. 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.

6/5/11

"The 2011 Blue Book of City Competitiveness in China" shows HK is losing its competitiveness.

1/5/11

Many newspapers discuss the implementation of minimum wage.

30/4/11

The minimum wage policy implements.

29/4/11

Many newspapers on the next day report the Royal Wedding in the UK

22/4/11

HK Railway denies the violations of freedom of the press.

21/4/11

Hong Kong inflation becomes severe.

13/4/11

Hong Kong Government will sell 12 sites to boost land supply.

11/4/11

Contract workers for Government get paid holidays.

8/4/11

Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Rita Lau resigns.

4/4/11

Many newspapers discuss the maternity problem caused by Mainland mothers in HK.



Commentary

Note: The following commentary was written by Director of POP Robert Chung.

Our latest survey shows that the popularity figures of CE Donald Tsang have not changed much compared to two weeks ago. His net popularity now stands at negative 28 percentage points. Indepth analyses show that those of age 18 to 49 give significantly lower ratings to CE, they are also less supportive of his appointment as CE. As for FS John Tsang, his support rating continues to drop, seemingly on a one way ticket to another record low since he became FS. The net approval rate of John Tsang now stands at negative 12 percentage points. Compared to the positive 34 percentage points registered before the Budget, it has plunged 46 percentage points in three months.

As for the other Secretaries of Departments, compared to one month ago, the overall popularity figures of CS Henry Tang and SJ Wong Yan-lung have not changed much. Their net popularity now stands at positive 10 and positive 61 percentage points. Wong Yan-lung remains to be the most popular Secretary of Department.

As for the Directors of Bureaux, compared to one month ago, the approval rates of 8 among 11 incumbent Directors have gone up, 2 have gone down while 1 remains unchanged. Among them, Secretary for Security Ambrose Lee and Secretary for the Environment Edward Yau have registered changes in approval rates beyond sampling error, up by 8 and 5 percentage points respectively. Only Secretary for Education Michael Suen and Secretary for Home Affairs Tsang Tak-sing register negative popularity, at negative 21 and 9 percentage points respectively.

According to POP's standard, Wong Yan-lung and Ambrose Lee now fall under the category of"ideal" performers. Carrie Lam now falls under the category of"successful" performer. The performance of Matthew Cheung, York Chow, Eva Cheng, Edward Yau, Ceajer Chan, Henry Tang, Stephen Lam, Tsang Tak-sing, John Tsang and Michael Suen can be labeled as"mediocre", while that of Denise Yue can be labeled as"inconspicuous", and that of Donald Tsang"depressing". No official falls under the category of"disastrous". As for the reasons affecting the popularity change of these officials, readers can make their own judgment using detailed records shown in our "Opinion Daily" feature page.

The following table summarizes the grading of the principal officials for readers' easy reference:

"Ideal": those with approval rates of over 66%; ranked by their approval rates shown inside brackets

SJ Wong Yan-lung (66%[18]); Secretary for Security Ambrose Lee Siu-kwong (66%[18])

 

"Successful": those with approval rates of over 50%; ranked by their approval rates shown inside brackets

Secretary for Development Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor (51%)

 

"Mediocre": those not belonging to other 5 types; ranked by their approval rates shown inside brackets

Secretary for Labour and Welfare Matthew Cheung Kin-chung (43%); Secretary for Food and Health York Chow Yat-ngok (42%[18]); Secretary for Transport and Housing Eva Cheng Yu-wah (42%[18]); Secretary for the Environment Edward Yau Tang-wah (39%); Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury Ceajer Chan Ka-keung (36%); CS Henry Tang Ying-yen (34%); Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Stephen Lam Sui-lung (33%); Secretary for Home Affairs Tsang Tak-sing (28%); FS John Tsang Chun-wah (25%); Secretary for Education Michael Suen Ming-yeung (24%)

 

"Inconspicuous": those with recognition rates of less than 50%; ranked by their approval rates; the first figure inside bracket is approval rate while the second figure is recognition rate

Secretary for the Civil Service Denise Yue Chung-yee (30%, 43%)

 

"Depressing": those with disapproval rates of over 50%; ranked by their disapproval rates shown inside brackets

CE Donald Tsang Yam-kuen (58%)

 

"Disastrous": those with disapproval rates of over 66%; ranked by their disapproval rates

None

[18] In one decimal place, the approval rate of SJ Wong Yan-lung and Secretary for Security Ambrose Lee are 66.1% and 66.0% respectively, while that of Secretary for Food and Health York Chow and Secretary for Transport and Housing Eva Cheng are 41.7% and 41.6% respectively.


Future Release (Tentative)

  • May 24, 2011 (Tuesday) 1pm to 2pm: Rankings of political figures

| Abstract | Latest Figures | Indepth Analysis | Opinion Daily | Commentary | Future Release (Tentative) |
| Detailed Findings (Popularity of Chief Executive/Popularity of Principal Officials) |