News Release

Public opinion in Russia: Russians' attitudes on economic and domestic issues

Public is rallying around Putin even though economic woes are top of mind

Peer-Reviewed Publication

NORC at the University of Chicago

Chicago, December 17, 2014--A poll of the Russian public, conducted by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, was released today. The poll, which includes a nationally representative in-person survey of 2,008 Russian adults taken between November 22 and December 7, 2014, found that President Vladimir Putin is extremely popular. Few say the economy is in good condition and most say that sanctions are hurting the Russian economy. Despite economic woes, most Russians believe their country is headed in the right direction. Most respondents are also optimistic their financial situation will improve in coming years.

"We are excited to release the AP-NORC Center's first international survey," said Trevor Tompson, director of the AP-NORC Center. "Russia is at the center of many matters of contention, both in the domestic and international arenas, and we wanted to explore the state of the Russian public's opinions on a variety of economic and political issues."

Here are some of the key findings from the AP-NORC Center poll:

  • The Russian people are rallying around Vladimir Putin, who now enjoys an 81 percent approval rating, much higher than the 58 percent rating he received in a 2012 AP poll.

  • Economic woes are top of mind among the Russian people even though few Russians report a negative impact on their own pocketbooks. Most say that sanctions are hurting the Russian economy, though impacts on personal finances are more concentrated among those with higher incomes.

  • Two thirds of Russians favor efforts to support Ukrainians who want to separate from the Kiev government.

About the Survey

This survey, funded by NORC at the University of Chicago, was conducted by NORC with fieldwork by GfK Russia between the dates of November 22 and December 7, 2014. The survey featured a nationally representative, multi-stage cluster, random route-sample of adults 18 years and older in Russia. The poll was conducted with in-person interviews of 2,008 adults. Interviewers selected and visited 14,021 addresses, and had a 57 percent contact rate. Among those contacted, 21 percent responded. Including non-contacts, the cumulative response rate is 14 percent. The overall margin of error +/- 2.4 percentage points at the 95 percent confidence level (including the design effect). The data are weighted to reflect the Russian population based on the 2010 Russian Census.


About The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research

The AP-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research taps into the power of social science research and the highest-quality journalism to bring key information to people across the nation and throughout the world.

The Associated Press is the essential global news network, delivering fast, unbiased news from every corner of the world to all media platforms and formats. Founded in 1846, AP today is the most trusted source of independent news and information. On any given day, more than half the world's population sees news from AP.

NORC at the University of Chicago is an independent research organization that collaborates with government agencies, foundations, educational institutions, nonprofit organizations, and businesses to provide data and analysis that support informed decision making in key areas including health, education, economics, crime, justice, and energy. NORC's 70 years of leadership and experience in data collection, analysis, and dissemination--coupled with deep subject matter expertise--provides the foundation for effective solutions.

The two organizations have established the AP-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research to conduct, analyze, and distribute social science research in the public interest on newsworthy topics, and to use the power of journalism to tell the stories that research reveals.


For more information please contact: Eric Young for NORC at the University of Chicago or Paul Colford for The Associated Press. Paul Colford may be reached at

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