FSD3149 ISSP 2016: Role of Government V: Finnish Data

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  • International Social Survey Programme (ISSP)
  • Melin, Harri (University of Tampere. School of Social Sciences and Humanities)


administration, corruption, economic systems, government, government role, health services, immigration, law, legal systems, political extremism, political interest, political power, public administration, public expenditure, social services, taxation

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ISSP 2016: Role of Government V: Finnish Data - survey investigated the opinions of Finnish people on government and government actions, authorities, citizen's possibilities of influencing government, taxation, corruption, and immigration.

The first questions dealt with law and the justice systems. The respondents were asked whether they thought that people should obey the law without exception and whether they thought it is worse to convict an innocent person or to let a guilty person go free. The respondents were also asked about ways in which people or organisations should be permitted to protest against the government and what rights should be allowed for political extremists.

Views on government's possible economic measures were probed. The respondents' were asked if they were in favour or against certain measures, such as "cuts in government spending" and "reducing the working week to create more jobs". Next, the respondents were presented with a list of government spending areas. They were asked whether they would like to see the government spend more or less money on areas such as health, the police and law enforcement, and education. Furthermore, views on government responsibilities such as "keeping prices under control" or "providing health care for the sick" were investigated. The respondents' attitudes on who should provide services, such as health care for the sick, care for the elderly, or education for children, were charted. The options included government, private companies, non-profit organisations, religious organisations, and family.

Perceptions of which people and organisations have the most influence on government actions in Finland were investigated. Views on civil liberties and public security were studied with questions about government surveillance of private persons. Furthermore, the respondents were asked what rights the authorities should have in case of a suspected terrorist act. Next, the respondents' interest in politics and their views on how they could influence politics were studied.

Views on taxation for people with different levels of income, as well as attitudes towards tax authorities and major private companies were investigated. Opinions on corruption of politicians and public officials were studied as well. Lastly, the respondents were asked how successful the Finnish government was in providing health care for the sick, providing a decent standard of living for the old, and dealing with threats to Finland's security. The Finnish questionnaire also contained a question about immigration, which was absent from the English version of the ISSP questionnaire. In this question, the respondents' views on who should be allowed to immigrate to Finland were studied.

Background variables included the respondent's gender, age, education, participation in working life, occupation, weekly working time, whether R held a managerial position, employer (public/private sector), membership in trade union, voting behaviour, religion, income, and information about R's neighbourhood.

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