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Friday, December 21, 2012

Gallup on Al-Jazeera: Most and Least Positive Countries Worldwide

Gallup’s Jon Clifton appears on Al-Jazeera to discuss a Gallup study revealing that Latin American nations are among the most positive in the world, while Singapore is the least positive. He also addresses why wealth alone does not drive emotions, whether cultural differences affect the survey findings, and how Gallup measures emotions.

Watch the video:

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Tuesday, December 11, 2012

One Million Interviews Worldwide: What We Have Learned From the Gallup World Poll

By Jon Clifton, Partner

In 2005, Gallup committed to surveying nations worldwide, as often as possible, for the next 100 years. As of July 2012, Gallup has scientifically measured the attitudes and behaviors of 1 million people from 160 countries -- representing 98% of the world’s population.

The World Poll systematically tracks wellbeing, community attachment, approval ratings of leadership, confidence in national institutions, employment rates, and other critical issues affecting people’s lives. The idea is to give people everywhere a voice and to give leaders valuable intelligence about the attitudes and behaviors of their citizenries. Dedicated teams throughout Gallup go to great lengths to ensure we achieve accurate, nationally representative samples. Our interviewers worldwide have overcome challenges such as proper language translation, difficult terrain, and adapting to local customs.

Gallup Senior Scientists and other renowned researchers analyze this incredible wealth of global data and use it as the foundation for innovative global studies. Gallup partners with the World Bank to use the World Poll infrastructure to collect data about the financial behavior of adults worldwide, with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to understand how sub-Saharan Africans manage their money, and with Healthways to annually measure the emotional, physical, and financial wellbeing of people worldwide. Numerous institutions, including the United Nations, OECD, and ILO now use the information that Gallup collects through the World Poll in their own work.

Dr. George Gallup’s mission was to measure and report on the will of all of the world’s citizens. By interviewing 1 million people, we have taken another significant step toward fulfilling that mission.

Watch the video below to see Gale Muller, Ph.D., vice chairman and general manager of the Gallup World Poll, explain how Gallup scientifically measures the will of the people in 160 countries. Muller also discusses the mission behind Gallup's World Poll.

The Gallup World Poll

Watch the video below to see Gale Muller reveal some of Gallup's greatest discoveries from the more than 1 million interviews it has conducted with citizens worldwide. He highlights metrics that indicate the potential for social unrest and new ways of assessing global employment.

The Greatest World Poll Discoveries

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

God Is Alive and Well: The Future of Religion in America

In God Is Alive and Well, which hits bookshelves today, Gallup Editor-in-Chief Frank Newport reveals that religion is as powerful and influential as it’s ever been in America. Newport argues that religion may be more significant in years ahead, and we may be on the cusp of a religious renaissance.

Popular books by the “New Atheists” dismiss religion as a delusional artifact of ancient superstitions. “However, millions of Americans’ religious beliefs and behaviors should not be tossed aside that quickly,” says Newport. “Whether or not God is a ‘delusion,’ religion has enormous personal and social consequences, particularly for those who are extremely religious,” Newport explains.

The book is based on the more than 1 million interviews Gallup has conducted with Americans since 2008. Dr. Newport analyzes this unparalleled and unprecedented database of information about Americans and their religions -- revealing just how powerfully intertwined religion is with every aspect of society.

Key findings from the book include:

  • Religion is good for your health -- religious Americans have higher wellbeing. 
  • Religious institutions will probably have to give women more power in the future because of this contradiction: Even though women are more religious than men, some religious institutions deny women access to higher positions in their organizations.
  • Religious intensity is correlated with Republican political identity in the United States today. Democrats will most likely realize that they will have to relate their political philosophy to religion if they are to compete for the valuable bloc of religious voters.
  • Based on their religious characteristics and their stance on many moral and values issues, blacks in America should identify as predominantly Republican, but they do not. 
  • Increasingly, Americans don’t have a religious identity, or they identify with broad religious labels rather than with specific denominations. 
  • Unbranded, nondenominational religions and megachurches are growing.
  • Baby boomers will most likely become more religious as they age. Given the sheer size of the baby boomer generation, the entire nation will thus tilt more religious in the years ahead.
  • No matter what your religious identity, if you live in Vermont (least religious state in the country), you are less religious than if you have the same religious identity and live in Mississippi (most religious state in country).
  • Upper-class, more educated people use religion less for its personal value and more for its communal, social value compared with Americans in lower classes.
  • Religiousness is strongly correlated with being married, but it’s unclear if marriage causes religiousness or if religiousness causes marriage -- or if there is no causal relationship at all.
America will likely become a more religious nation in the years ahead, albeit different than it is today. “The evidence in this book suggests that America could continue to blaze its own religious trail with religion changing, morphing, and transmuting itself into new but still vibrant forms,” says Newport.

God Is Alive and Well is available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and anywhere books are sold.

Read more findings about religion from Gallup and sign up for news alerts to get new articles as soon as they are published.

Monday, December 3, 2012

German Workers Equally Satisfied With Male and Female Managers

By Marco Nink, Senior Strategic Consultant

Nine countries, including Germany, have already expressed their reservations about the European Commission’s desire to put into place a binding gender quota for the boards of corporations across Europe. The new regulations, if approved, would stipulate that women occupy 40% of the seats on the non-executive boards of Europe's publicly traded companies.

While there are many arguments one can make both for and against a legally binding gender quota based on fairness, Gallup data show that female and male leaders likely affect employee engagement to a similar degree. In Germany specifically, a nationally representative Gallup survey of 1,920 employed adults, conducted Oct. 25-Nov. 18, 2010, found that a manager’s gender made no difference in a team’s overall level of satisfaction with that manager or in the team’s collective level of engagement. Both male and female supervisors received an average rating of 3.65, based on a five-point scale, with "1" being the lowest possible rating and "5" being the highest possible rating.

Although women in politics, such as German Chancellor Angela Merkel, already hold top positions, the boards of the top 200 companies in Germany are staffed almost exclusively with men. Of 942 board positions in 2011, women held only 28, according to a study of the Deutsches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung. A precursor to this may be that men are more likely than women to work in supervisory roles according to a Gallup survey conducted in Germany; 34% of male employees are responsible for other staff compared with 22% of female employees. Since management experience is an important prerequisite for a board position in Germany, it would thus follow that male managers would be more likely to be considered for higher level positions, such as placement on a company board.

Decades of Gallup research indicates that employee engagement, which is highly correlated with productivity and the company’s market value, will soar or plummet depending on the employee’s relationship with their manager. Each employee feels the impact of a good manager’s ability to meet his or her needs and expectations -- or a bad manager’s incompetence. On 11 out of 12 questions about engagement at work, male and female managers received similar scores. For example, male and female managers are rated equally well when it comes to giving positive and constructive feedback and creating opportunities for employees to express their opinions or ideas.

The one exception is that employees with female managers are more likely to agree with the statement, "My associates or fellow employees are committed to doing quality work," than employees with male managers (3.91 average for those with female managers compared to 3.69 for those with male managers on a five-point scale). This difference may mean that female managers are better at providing clear quality standards and keeping those standards at the forefront of their team members' minds -- a quality that could be valuable among board members.

Whether Germany decides to implement a legally binding quota, the bottom line is that managers should be chosen based on their ability to meet the needs of their employees -- as that is what makes employees and organizations thrive.

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