Professors Sören Holmberg and Lennart Weibull presented the 2012 results of the annual study 'Förtroendebarometern' at the Media Days in Gothenburg in early March. The study shows the public's confidence in Swedish media actors, institutions and companies. Universities and university colleges once again placed high.
Out of all the organisations included in survey, the public service radio broadcaster Sveriges Radio (SR) tops the list – 78 percent of the respondents have very high or fairly high confidence in SR. The public service television broadcaster SVT ranks second with 74 percent, followed by universities and university colleges with 64 percent. The nationalist party Swedish Democrats is found at the bottom with 7 percent, below the car manufacturer SAAB with 10 percent.
So, what does 'confidence' really mean?
'Confidence here refers to a combination of correctitude, reasonableness and emotional attitude towards an organisation,' said Professor Lennart Weibull at the University of Gothenburg, who presented the results of the study together with Professor Sören Holmberg.
Another interesting finding is that the Swedish Parliament scored higher (48 percent) than last year.
'This is a result of the citizens feeling that the economy and the financial crisis have been managed well,' said Holmberg.
Among the societal institutions, it can be noted that the Swedish Tax Agency remains at 54 percent, while the Swedish Social Insurance Agency and the Swedish Public Employment Service scored only 18 and 14 percent, respectively.
As part of the survey study, the researchers measured the public's confidence in various professional groups. Nurses top the list with 74 percent, while only 24 percent reported very high or fairly high confidence in journalists.
People's confidence in the Swedish Royal Court was explored as well. Despite the fact that the most recent survey was conducted after the birth of Princess Estelle, the score went up by only one percentage point, from 35 to 36 percent. Thus, there was no sign of a noticeable Estelle effect.
The Förtroendebarometern survey is conducted by Medieakademin, the University of Gothenburg and TNS Sifo. It has measured the public's confidence in companies, institutions and the media since 1997.
The most recent study was based on 1 017 web questionnaires submitted 8-14 February. The reported percentages indicate the proportion of respondents with an opinion who have very high or fairly high confidence in the organisation in question. This was the first time the survey was conducted in the spring.
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