English title: The Globalization of Public Opinion Research

Author(s): Anthony F. Heath - Stephen Fisher - Shawna Smith -

Language: English

Type: Journal article

Year: 2005


As globalization has opened up channels of communication between different countries and increased interest in cross-national analysis, public opinion survey research has expanded its reach in the world. This article examines both the breadth and the depth of the globalization of public opinion research. First, we discuss the growth of cross-national surveys such as the World Values Survey, the International Social Survey Program, the European Social Survey, and the various Global Barometers. We then turn to the issues of data quality and comparability. Has the globalization of survey research meant the spread of a standard “product” of known and equivalent quality to diverse countries? Can survey research in diverse countries and contexts deliver meaningful comparisons of public opinion? Has globalization led to the dominance of an intellectual framework and set of assumptions that may not be quite appropriate outside their original homes? Finally, the article suggests a new standard for “grading” cross-national programs of survey research, inspired by debates in evidence-based medicine.

Volume: 8

Issue: 0

From page no: 297

To page no: 333

Refereed: Yes

DOI: 10.1146/ANNUREV.POLSCI.8.090203.103000

Journal: Annual review of political science (Palo Alto, Calif. Print)

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