The Asian Barometer Survey (ABS) grows out of the Comparative Survey of Democratization and Value Change in East Asia Project (also known as East Asia Barometer), which was launched in mid-2000 and funded by the Ministry of Education of Taiwan under the MOE-NSC Program for Promoting Academic Excellence of University. The ABS is currently based at National Taiwan University (NTU) and the operation of the headquarters is jointly sponsored by the Department of Political Science at NTU and the Institute of Political Science of Academia Sinica. The East Asian component of the project is coordinated by Yun-han Chu, who also serves as the overall coordinator of the Asian Barometer. In organizing its first-wave survey (2001-2003), the East Asia Barometer (EABS) brought together 13 country teams and more than 30 leading scholars from across the region and the United States. Since its founding, the EABS Project has been increasingly recognized as the region's first systematic and most careful comparative survey of attitudes and orientations toward political regime, democracy, governance, and economic reform.
In July 2001, the EABS joined with three partner projects -- Latinobarometro, Afrobarometer, and Arab Barometer -- in a path-breathing effort to launch Globalbarometer Survey (GBS), a global consortium of comparative surveys across emerging democracies and transitional societies.
The EABS is now becoming a true pan-Asian survey research initiative. New collaborative teams from Indonesia, Singapore, Cambodia, Vietnam, and Malaysia are joining the EABS as the project enters its second phase (2004-2008). Also, the South Asian division, based at the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies (in New Delhi) and directed by Yogendra Yadav, is collaborating with the EABS for the creation of a more inclusive regional survey network under the new identity of the Asian Barometer Survey. This path-breaking regional initiative builds upon a substantial base of completed scholarly work in a number of Asian countries. Most of the participating national teams were established more than a decade ago, have acquired abundant experiences and methodological know-how in administering nationwide surveys on citizen's political attitudes and behaviors, and have published a substantial number of works both in their native languages and in English.
The third wave of the Asian Barometer survey (ABS) conducted in 2010 and the database contains nine countries and regions in East Asia - the Philippines, Taiwan, Thailand, Mongolia, Singapore, Vietnam, Indonesia, Malaysia and South Korea. The ABS is an applied research program on public opinion on political values, democracy, and governance around the region. The regional network encompasses research teams from 13 East Asian political systems and 5 South Asian countries. Together, this regional survey network covers virtually all major political systems in the region, systems that have experienced different trajectories of regime evolution and are currently at different stages of political transition.
The mission and task of each national research team are to administer survey instruments to compile the required micro-level data under a common research framework and research methodology to ensure that the data is reliable and comparable on the issues of citizens' attitudes and values toward politics, power, reform, and democracy in Asia.
The Asian Barometer Survey is headquartered in Taipei and co-hosted by the Institute of Political Science, Academia Sinica and The Institute for the Advanced Studies of Humanities and Social Sciences, National Taiwan University.
Kind of Data
Sample survey data [ssd]
Unit of Analysis
Economic Evaluations Trust in Institutions, Social Capital, Political Participation, Electoral Mobilization, Psychological Involvement and Partisanship, Traditionalism, Democratic Legitimacy and Preference for Democracy, Efficacy, Citizen Empowerment, System Responsiveness, Democratic vs. Authoritarian Values, Cleavage, Belief in Procedural Norms of Democracy, Social-Economic Background Variables, Interview Record.
13 East Asian political systems: Japan, Mongolia, South Koreas, Taiwan, Hong Kong, China, the Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Singapore, Indonesia, and Malaysia;
5 South Asian countries: India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Nepal
Producers and sponsors
Institute of Political Science
East Asia Democratic Studies
Institute for Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences at National Taiwan University
MOE-NSC Program, Ministry of Education
Institute of Political Science, Academia Sinica
Henry Luce Foundation
Compared with surveys carried out within a single nation, cross-nation survey involves an extra layer of difficulty and complexity in terms of survey management, research design, and database modeling for the purpose of data preservation and easy analysis. To facilitate the progress of the Asian Barometer Surveys, the survey methodology and database subproject is formed as an important protocol specifically aiming at overseeing and coordinating survey research designs, database modeling, and data release.
As a network of Global Barometer Surveys, Asian Barometer Survey requires all country teams to comply with the research protocols which Global Barometer network has developed, tested, and proved practical methods for conducting comparative survey research on public attitudes.
- National probability samples that give every citizen in each country an equal chance of being selected for interview. Whether using census household lists or a multistage area approach, the method for selecting sampling units is always randomized. The samples may be stratified, or weights applied, to ensure coverage of rural areas and minority populations in their correct proportions. As such, Asian Barometer samples represent the adult, voting-age population in each country surveyed.
A model Asian Barometer Survey has a sample size of 1,200 respondents, which allows a minimum confidence interval of plus or minus 3 percent at 95 percent probability.
Dates of Data Collection
Data Collection Mode
Maintenance of quality control by means strict protocols for fieldwork supervision. To ensure data quality, we require that all interview teams travel together under the direction of a field supervisor. Interviewers are debriefed each evening and instructed to return to the sampled household to finish any incomplete returns. Supervisors undertake random back-checks with respondents to ensure that sampling and interviews were conducted correctly.
Data Collection Notes
Intensive training of fieldworkers. The success of Asian Barometer surveys depends upon the effectiveness of field operations, especially the training of interviewers, supervisors and fieldwork managers. We recruit interviewers from among university graduates, senior social science undergraduates, or professional survey interviewers. All managers and supervisors have extensive field experience. Field teams pass through intensive, week-long training programs to familiarize them with the Asian Barometer research instrument, our sampling methods, and the cultural and ethical context of the interview. Guidelines are codified in instruction manuals that spell out procedures for the selection and replacement of samples, the validation of interview records, and the etiquette of conducting interviews.
Face-to-face interviews in respondents’ homes or workplaces in the language of the respondent’s choice. In multilingual countries, considerable attention is given to the vexing challenge of questionnaire translation. Local language translations are prepared with the goal of accommodating every language group whose members constitute at least 5 percent of the population. To check for accuracy, the local language versions are screened through blind back-translation by a different translator and any discrepancies are corrected. Interviewers are required to record contextual information on the situations encountered during the interview.
A standard questionnaire instrument containing a core module of identical or functionally equivalent questions. Wherever possible, theoretical concepts are measured with multiple items in order to enable testing for construct validity. The wording of items is determined by balancing various criteria, including: the research themes emphasized in the survey, the comprehensibility of the item to lay respondents, and the proven effectiveness of the item when tested in previous surveys.
1.Economic Evaluations: What is the economic condition of the nation and your family: now, over the last five years, and in the next five years?
2.Trust in institutions: How trustworthy are public institutions, including government branches, the media, the military, and NGOs.
3.Social Capital: Membership in private and public groups, the frequency and degree of group participation, trust in others, and influence of guanxi.
4.Political Participatio: Voting in elections, national and local, country-specific voting patterns, and active participation in the political process as well as demonstrations and strikes. Contact with government and elected officials, political organizations, NGOs and media.
5.Electoral Mobilization: Personal connections with officials, candidates, and political parties; influence on voter choice.
6.Psychological Involvement and Partisanship: Interest in political news coverage, impact of government policies on daily life, and party allegiance.
7.Traditionalism: Importance of consensus and family, role of the elderly, face, and woman in theworkplace.
8.Democratic Legitimacy and Preference for Democracy: Democratic ranking of present and previous regime, and expected ranking in the next five years; satisfaction with how democracy works, suitability of democracy; comparisons between current and previous regimes, especially corruption; democracy and economic development, political competition, national unity, social problems, military government, and technocracy.
9.Efficacy, Citizen Empowerment, System Responsiveness: Accessibility of political system: does a political elite prevent access and reduce the ability of people to influence the government.
10.Democratic vs. Authoritarian Values: Level of education and political equality, government leadership and superiority, separation of executive and judiciary.
11.Cleavage: Ownership of state-owned enterprises, national authority over local decisions, cultural insulation, community and the individual.
12.Belief in Procedural Norms of Democracy: Respect of procedures by political leaders: compromise, tolerance of opposing and minority views.
13.Social-Economic Background Variables: Gender, age, marital status, education level, years of formal education, religion and religiosity, household, income, language and ethnicity.
14.Interview Record: Gender, age, class, and language of the interviewer, people present at the interview; did the respondent: refuse, display impatience, and cooperate; the language or dialect spoken in interview, and was an interpreter present.
Quality checks are enforced at every stage of data conversion to ensure that information from paper returns is edited, coded, and entered correctly for purposes of computer analysis. Machine readable data are generated by trained data entry operators and a minimum of 20 percent of the data is entered twice by independent teams for purposes of cross-checking. Data cleaning involves checks for illegal and logically inconsistent values.
Asian Barometer Survey
Department of Political Science, National Taiwan University
Ms. Wei-Chi Chen
Asian Barometer Survey
Department of Political Science, National Taiwan University
Datasets are available to download from external repository at http://www.asianbarometer.org/newenglish/surveys/DataRelease.htm
Use of the dataset must be acknowledged using a citation which would include:
- the Identification of the Primary Investigator
- the title of the survey (including country, acronym and year of implementation)
- the survey reference number
- the source and date of download
Institute of Political Science, Academia Sincia and East Asia Democratic Studies, Institute for Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences at National Taiwan University. Asian Barometer Survey (ABS) 2010-2011, Ref. WLD_2010_ABS_v01_M. Dataset downloaded from [url] on [date].
Disclaimer and copyrights
The user of the data acknowledges that the original collector of the data, the authorized distributor of the data, and the relevant funding agency bear no responsibility for use of the data or for interpretations or inferences based upon such uses.