Thursday, 22 January 2015

Eurobarometer: The European Year for Development – Citizens’ views on development, cooperation and aid

Helping people in developing countries is considered important by 85% of Europeans according to this Eurobarometer survey. It shows that, overall, attitudes towards development and cooperation are positive. In spite of continuing economic uncertainty across the EU, there is strong support for increasing development aid in almost all Member States.

In addition, most respondents agree not only that helping developing countries should be one of the EU’s main priorities, but also that doing so would benefit Europeans and that providing aid is in the EU’s own interest. 2015, the European Year for Development, will be an important opportunity for the EU to build on this and inform citizens of the development challenges lying ahead, engaging in a debate with them.

Some interesting findings from the survey that highlight the opinions of citizens from EU13 countries – the countries that have joined the EU since 2004, TRIALOG partner countries – are the following:
Awareness about the 2015 as the European Year for Development is the highest in Hungary (24%), Lithuania (22%), Italy, Malta and Latvia (21%), but lowest in Czech Republic (7%).
Tackling poverty in developing countries as one of the main priorities of the EU and national governments: Respondents in Croatia, Cyprus, Sweden and Malta are among the most likely to agree, at the same time, they are the ones most likely to say it is important to help people in developing countries. Estonia and Slovakia are the only Member States where fewer than 50% agree that tackling poverty in developing countries should be one of the main priorities of the EU.
• A majority of respondents in every Member State, except in Bulgaria, agree that aid should be increased.
• Tackling poverty in developing countries is seen as a moral obligation with the highest numbers in Cyprus (91%) and Croatia (89%), meanwhile the lowest figures are shown amongst respondents in Estonia (57%), the Czech Republic (60%) and Slovakia (63%).
On volunteering in organisations one in five respondents in the EU agree that it helps developing countries, most strikingly in Cyprus (40%). Respondents in Hungary are the least likely to say volunteering is effective, but even so, at 58% they still represent the majority.
Personal commitment to and involvement in development: On the role of individuals in tackling poverty there is a wide diversity of opinions across Member States. In Bulgaria (72%) and Estonia (71%) respondents disagree with the statement that as individuals they can play a role in tackling poverty. Within EU13 respondents, in Cyprus, Malta and Romania they are more likely to agree with the statement.

Find more insights from the full servey here.
Read your country factsheet, available here.

Information provided by TRIALOG, based on ECDPM - European Centre for Development Policy Management

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