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East Asian Social Survey partnership

A Memorandum of Understanding has been signed between the European Social Survey (ESS) and the East Asian Social Survey (EASS) research network. 

The formal partnership was agreed between the European Social Survey HQ and all four partners of the network: Chinese General Social Survey (CGSS), Japanese General Social Survey (JGSS), Korean General Social Survey (KGSS) and Taiwan Social Change Survey (TSCS). 

The collective MoU provides a co-operative framework between the parties to exchange knowledge, improve survey methodology of all organisations and encourage the replication of ESS questions. 

Both parties are committed to: 

  • Facilitate the replication of ESS questionnaire items in future through the sharing of ESS questions in advance of public availability. 
  • The ESS agrees to host up to two researchers from the EASS, at the ESS HQ (City, University of London), and possibly at another Core Scientific Team (CST) institute in Europe. 
  • The EASS will be invited to send a representative to the biannual meetings of the ESS ERIC National Coordinators Forum. 
  • Share Research & Development (R&D) programmes to enhance research skills, innovation, and knowledge between both entities, in particular about their methodological approaches. 

We are absolutely delighted to sign this latest formal agreement with the East Asian Social Survey (EASS) research network members.

Professor Rory Fitzgerald Director of the ESS ERIC

The four-year collective agreement was made at a conference between the five organisations at City, University of London in late January 2024. 

At the East Asian Social Survey Conference in early 2023, all four members (CGSS, JGSS, KGSS and TSCS) agreed to field our Round 12 (2025) wellbeing module in their next wave. 

The ESS Round 10 (2020-22) COVID-19 module has already been fielded by the Japanese General Social Survey (JGSS 2021). JGSS COVID-19 data is available here

Formal individual agreements are already in place between the ESS and Japan (Japanese General Social Survey, Osaka University of Commerce) Korea (Survey Research Centre, Sungkyunkwan University). 

Professor Rory Fitzgerald, Director of the ESS ERIC, said: 

“We are absolutely delighted to sign this latest formal agreement with the East Asian Social Survey (EASS) research network members. 

“The sharing of knowledge and expertise when it comes to survey methodology is particularly important to us as we move from face-to-face data collection to completely self-completion methods in Round 13 (2027/28). 

“I express my gratitude to representatives of the Chinese General Social Survey, Japanese General Social Survey, Korean General Social Survey and Taiwan Social Change Survey, particularly in their commitment to fielding ESS questions in their surveys over the next four years. 

“This means that, as well as the methodological advancement this agreement brings, we will also see major benefits to substantive comparative survey research. We will be able truly assess attitudes between European and East Asian countries for the first time. 

Jibum Kim, KGSS Principal Investigator, added: 

“I am confident that the ESS-EASS MoU is a stepping stone for deepening our knowledge of Europe and East Asia.” 

Weidong Wang, CGSS Executive Co-Principal Investigator, said:  

“The signing of the MoU between the ESS and EASS holds significant importance. 

“It enables researchers from Europe and East Asia to join hands in conducting cross-cultural comparative research on a wide range of social and economic issues, as well as research methodologies. 

“I hope that one day, this collaboration will extend across the entire Eurasian continent.” 

The process of signing a Memorandum of Understanding has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 871063.