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The wellbeing of the residents of Ukraine in December 2016: The growing trend of hope for better off for the country and for the family at the end of the year
Press release by Daryna Pyrohova
In a period of December 3-12 of 2016, Kyiv International Institute of Sociology (KIIS) has conducted its own public opinion poll. Data were collected from 2040 respondents living in 110 settlements (PSU) in all regions of Ukraine (except for AR of Crimea) with the method of personal interviewing. The sample was stochastic and 4-staged with quota selection on the last stage, the sample is representative of the population of Ukraine aged 18 and above.
In Luhansk and Donetsk oblasts (regions) survey was conducted only in the territories that are controlled by the Ukrainian government. In this survey, the sample covered only the controlled part of Donbas in the same proportion as it stood for Donbas voters in the last parliamentary elections (October 2014) according to the data of CEC.
The statistical sample error (with a probability of 0.95 and design–effect of 1.5) does not exceed:
3.3% for indicators close to 50%,
2.8% – for indicators close to 25%,
2.0% – for indicators close to 10%,
1.4% – for indicators close to 5%.
Five years in a row KIIS have been conducting an annual systematical assessment of two indices for the evaluation and monitoring of public and individual well-being: the index of social well-being (ISW) and the index of individual well-being (IIW). Index values may range from -100 to 100 points, where -100 indicates the lowest assessment of the situation and dissatisfaction, and 100 - the highest score and overall satisfaction with the situation in the country or the own life. A detailed description of the index calculation can be found in the Addition.
In December 2016 the average value of ISW was -51, while the individual well-being was estimated much higher - at -3 points. Such a large difference in the indices shows that despite all the hardships, on average the Ukrainians are much more satisfied with their own lives than with the life of a country.
However, one can not say that these are two parallel worlds, because there is a direct correlation between them and it's the strength varies: in 2014 the coefficient that describes the closeness of connection r was equal to r = 0.28, in May 2016 r = 0.48, and in December r = 0.40; the maximum possible value of this factor is 1.
Graph 1. Dynamics of indices ISW and IIS in Ukraine in 2012-2016
From May to December 2016 (Graph 1), both indexes increased, which means the assessments of the situation in both individual and public contexts improved. Comparison of changes in individual components of the indexes (Table. 1) also shows significant changes in almost all indicators. For the index of social well-being the rate of accuracy of the direction of affairs in the country significantly reduced, but at the same time the rates of economic status and expectations of future life in the country raised.
As to individual index of wellbeing, the rate of expectations about the future life of the family significantly increased, while the indicators of individual happiness, health and financial situation stayed almost unchanged compared with May.
Table 1. Dynamics of indices of social and individual well-being in Ukraine in 2012-2016
It is worth noting, that considering the whole observation period, now the indicator of the direction of Ukraine`s development in the index of social welfare is the lowest observed (-66), as well as indicator of family financial situation in the index of individual well-being is the lowest observed (-43) (Graph 2).
Graph 2. Changes in the components of indices ISW and IIW in Ukraine in 2012-2016
In general for Ukraine, the average value for the ISW increased by 2 points compared to May 2016 and IIW increased by 5 points. These changes were mainly due to high expectations of the future life in the country and the family and to the indicator of the economic situation. Thus, assessment of expectations of future life in the country has increased by 10 points, of economic status - increased by 5 points, and expectations of future life in the family increased by 18 points. While the dynamics in February 2014-May 2016 negative expectations about the future of the country (there was a fall by 18 points) and their own family (down by 25 points) were recorded.
As one can see, individual financial status people evaluate considerably better than the situation in the country (-43 compared to -63).
The importance of ISW and its components is significantly influenced by the region of residence (more information in the table. D1 in Addition). Assessment of personal economic well-being of the Ukrainians is much lower in the East compared to other regions. But expectations of future life show marked worsening from the West to the East through the Center and the South (Graph 3).
Graph 3. Regional differences in dynamics of estimates of economic state and of expectations about the life of the country in future
IIW value depends significantly on the age of the respondents. It is worth noting, that with the increase of age of the respondents the number of positive ratings on all components of IIW reduces, the greatest difference between the youngest and oldest age groups is in the esteem of individual health and happiness. The exception is people older than 70: their expectations of family life in the future is higher than in a decade younger age group 60-69 years.
Graph 4. Value of IIW and its components by age groups (average)
Addition 1. Methodology of index construction
For index construction we asked 7 questions: 4 of the questions are derived from the list of those that are used for the construction of Index of social attitudes calculated by Levada-Center, other 3 questions are standard for KIIS Omnibus questionnaire. Resulting from factor analysis, these 7 questions are divided into 2 indexes. Hereby you can find a list of questions.
Index of social well-being (ISW):
• In your opinion, are matters in Ukraine going in right or in the wrong direction?
• How can you characterize the state of Ukrainian economics?
• Talking about Ukraine in general, in your opinion, will life here become better or worse in a year?
Index of individual well-being (IIW):
• Do you think you are a happy person?
• How can you characterize the state of your health?
• In your opinion, will your family live better or worse in a year?
• Take a look at the card please, which one of the statement characterizes the financial wellbeing of your family the most precisely?
Index values might fluctuate from -100 to 100 points, where -100 indicates the lowest estimates of the situation anddissatisfaction with it, while 100 points mean the highest estimates and general satisfaction with the situation in the country and/or in own life.
Commentary of N.Kharchenko, PhD in Sociology, the executive director of KIIS
Comparison of dynamic indices in Ukraine is complicated by the annexation of the Crimea and military conflict in the Donbass. Calculation of indices 2014-2016 is made for the territory controlled by Ukraine. The sample for the “Omnibus – May, 2016” was constructed in a way that allows to cover only controlled territories and to distribute proportionally between all regions of Ukraine those interviews that earlier covered the uncontrolled territories. That is, the partitions of South and Eastern macro regions are smaller now comparing to the waves of study in previous years.
Addition 2. Questions and coding of alternatives:
In your opinion, are matters in Ukraine going in right or in the wrong direction? ONE ANSWER
How can you characterize the state of Ukrainian economics? ONE ANSWER
Talking about Ukraine in general, in your opinion, will life here become better or worse in a year? ONE ANSWER
Do you think you are a happy person? ONE ANSWER
In your opinion, will your family live better or worse in a year? ONE ANSWER
How can you characterize the state of your health? ONE ANSWER
Which one of the statement characterizes the financial capabilities of your family the most precisely?
Addition 3. Tables
In your opinion, does government lead Ukraine in the right or wrong direction?
How can you characterize the state of Ukrainian economics?
Talking about Ukraine in general, in your opinion, will life here become better or worse in a year?
In your opinion, will your family live better or worse in a year?
How can you characterize the state of your health?
D8. Take a look at the card please, which one of the statements characterizes the financial capabilities of your family the most precisely?
Table D1. Regional differences in the dynamics of index of social well-being in Ukraine in 2012 – 2016
For the comments please contact to Daryna Pyrogova: 38044-5373376, firstname.lastname@example.org