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 Updates 2011

A new Eurobarometer survey on employment issues and social affairs shows that more than a third of European citizens currently working are concerned about losing their jobs. However, the general sense of gloom about society as a whole – and about the chances of the economic crisis ending quickly – has not translated into a crisis of confidence when it comes to the way in which most respondents view their own prospects. Europeans generally consider that the impact of the EU on employment and social policies in their country is beneficial; it matters a great deal for European confidence – not to mention the EU itself – that ordinary citizens are aware of the EU’s efforts to tackle the problems that are such a source of anxiety today.
This Eurobarometer gives a picture of public perceptions of the challenges to peace and security in the European Union. The Eurobarometer accompanies the first annual report on the implementation of the Internal Security Strategy and sets up the baseline for future re-evaluation. Economic crisis, terrorism and poverty are amongst the most mentioned challenges with substantial differences among Member States. However it is cybercrime that in the view of citizens is most likely to increase.
This special Eurobarometer gauges Europeans' views on the future of development cooperation in a time of far-reaching changes; against the backdrop of the economic crisis and the Arab Spring, it is most timely to ask Europeans if they still believe in international solidarity and help.
Europeans continue to regard helping the poor as a priority. 84% of respondents support development aid to help people across the world out of poverty. The majority of EU citizens (84%) also support a strong focus of EU aid on good governance and human rights in developing countries, a direction proposed by EU Development Commissioner Piebalgs in his recent policy proposal, 'Agenda for Change'. Europeans are also ready to actively participate in helping the poor – half of the EU citizens are willing to pay more for their daily shopping, if they know that this would benefit developing countries.
In light of the low availability of 116 services, and with a view to the enhanced requirements of the revised Universal Services Directive to raise awareness, in May 2011, the Commission carried out a Eurobarometer survey to assess the level of awareness in the Member States. The strong support expressed across the European Union for the five types of helplines (85-91% of Europeans think that these numbers are fairly or very useful) demonstrates the importance of providing these services and of unifying them under a single numbering range throughout the EU. Across the EU, three out of four people feel that their Government does not provide enough information about the 116 helplines. The low level of awareness of those 116 services that are operational (seldom exceeding 1% and never exceeding 7% for any number in any Member State) strongly suggests that people are quite right to report a lack of information.
The Special Eurobarometer surveys on the social climate cover 15 areas and asks respondents to assess, for each of these areas, the current situation, how the situation has evolved over the past five years and how they expect it to change over the coming year. Three waves have been conducted: the first wave was conducted in 2009 (Special EB 315), the second wave in 2010 (Special EB 349) and the third wave in 2011 (Special EB 370) . Even though the impact of the crisis is still being felt, overall some improvement has been observed in 2011.
Climate change is one of the greatest challenges of the modern age. As Europe takes action to meet its objectives, it is important to understand the attitudes and behaviour of EU citizens towards climate change and their expectations for the future. This Eurobarometer survey measures these and compares them with the last poll on this issue carried out in 2009.
Vocational education and training is an essential tool when it comes to preparing young people for work in the modern economy. This Eurobarometer survey sets out to assess the image that European citizens have of vocational education and training and of its potential impact on society and on the economy. It also looks at the factors that influence young people when they choose between vocational education and training and other forms of education.
The Common Agricultural Policy (CAP)1 has been a cornerstone of EU policy relating to farming and the rural areas. It aimed to provide a harmonised framework to maintain adequate supplies, increase productivity and ensure that both consumers and producers receive a fair deal in the market .The CAP as gradually moved from a production based structure of subsidies to a market oriented system, integrating standards for food safety, environment and biodiversity, just to mention a few.
The Eurobarometer survey addressed a number of elements in the context of the forthcoming CAP reform package.
Citizens' views on EU policies are of the utmost importance. To better gauge these views, DG MARKT undertook research out in the first quarter of 2011 on "Awareness, Perception and Impacts of Internal Market Policies". The data is representative of EU citizens' views and fills the often deplored information gap on our key stakeholder's needs and opinions. The study gauges the current level of awareness of the Internal Market and its benefits amongst the general public. It also measures citizens' attitudes as regards key Internal Market issues (e.g. cross-border work, public procurement that may involve foreign companies, counterfeiting and piracy, e-commerce, etc.).
EU citizens and businesses often experience problems with the use of their Single Market rights. When they travel, move or work abroad they can encounter difficulties making use of their healthcare or social security rights, having their professional qualifications recognised, opening a bank account or with double taxation. Inheriting across borders, taking a car to another Member State, buying online, claiming passenger rights or finding their way in banking and financial markets are also concerns from our citizens and business. The purpose of the study is to better understand the root causes of these obstacles and to check to what extent the latters are expected or experienced by the citizens, i.e. to test the gap between people's expectations about the Single Market and the problems and frustrations they experience on a daily basis.
Through this research the European Commission wanted to engage local authorities in discussions over the governance of the Single Market in order to identify potential areas of improvement of the EU policy making process. The discussions focused on local authorities' awareness and perceptions about EU policy making and on the main issues related to the implementation of EU legislation at their level.
The concept of well-being is made up of several factors. In order to identify these different factors and to gain an initial indication of the relative importance of these, DG COMM commissioned a qualitative study which was conducted in February and March 2010 providing insights into the notion of personal well-being in 15 member states. It was able to identify a full range of factors that contribute to well-being in which psychological or personal factors slightly prevail over economic or financial factors and physical factors. Wishing to get a broad perspective of the concept of well-being, DG EMPL had a qualitative study conducted in 8 member states in January, March and April 2011 in order to determine the priorities of citizens for the well-being of society as a whole in 2030. It is worth noting that social equality was considered a key factor of social well-being.
The key findings of this survey are: The figures showed a continued weakening support among NMS-7 citizens – since May 2009 – for the introduction of the euro in their countries. Overall, slightly fewer respondents are happy that the euro could replace their currency than those who would be unhappy. The share of respondents expecting positive personal consequences from the introduction of the euro also decreased somewhat. More than half of respondents still want their countries to join the euro rather sooner than later. An overwhelming majority agreed that joining the common currency would be more convenient for those who travel in other countries that use the euro and that the euro would make it easier to shop in other countries using the common currency.
The report presents the key messages and recommendations from interactive focus groups organised in all EU member countries with both EU citizens and migrant population. This qualitative Eurobarometer covers many aspects of the co-existence of people with different backgrounds and presents the role of mutual attitudes, cultures, ability to speak the country's language and employment in the integration process. The report also presents ideas for improving migrants' integration in the host societies. The results show the key role of school and work (places were migrants and local population meet most often) and underline the key role and responsibility of the local authorities.
The results of the special Eurobarometer "eCommunications household survey" conducted between 9 February and 8 March 2011 to measure the attitude of European households and individuals towards fixed and mobile telephony, Internet access, TV broadcast services, bundled offers, privacy, quality of services, affordability and switching. The survey covers the 27 EU Member States, with an average of 1,000 households interviewed per country. It follows on from the previous Eurobarometer survey which was conducted between November and December 2009.
This report presents the results of a survey conducted among young Europeans aged 15 to 24 regarding their behaviours and attitudes towards drugs, including the so-called "legal highs", that is to say new substances that imitate the effects of illicit drugs and are often sold in form of powders, herbs or pills. Insights are given into use, availability of drugs, opinions about responses of drug policy and about which measures could be best undertaken to tackle drug-related problems in society. The survey also provides insights into the risk perception of the interviewed target group towards various substances such as the health risk they see related to the use of particular drugs, ranging from heroin to cannabis, as well as alcohol.
This report presents the results of the largest survey ever conducted regarding citizen’s behaviours and attitudes concerning identity management, data protection and privacy. Two types of digital experts emerged from the survey. Firstly, ‘digital natives’: young persons born during or after the general introduction of digital technology. Secondly, ‘digital initiates’: they are not of a young age by definition, but have become experienced by interacting with digital technology e.g. through work or education, and have different viewpoints than digital natives.
This Flash Eurobarometer survey was conducted to examine EU rail passengers' satisfaction with various features of the rail services, including the railway stations. A large majority of the rail passengers surveyed said that they travelled by train less than once a month. A minority of respondents (8%) said that they took the train either every day or regularly.
Among the eight features related to rail stations which were analysed in the survey, rail passengers were more likely to be satisfied with three of them: (1) the ease of buying tickets, (2) the provision of information about train schedules and platforms and (3) the personal security in railway stations.
Of the eleven features of rail services and facilities the three that rail passengers were more likely to be satisfied with were (1) on board personal security , (2) scheduled journey time (3) seating comfort".
An overwhelming majority of Europeans think that protecting the environment is important (95%) and almost 8 in 10 Europeans (77%) say that protection of the environment can boost economic growth. The survey results of the Eurobarometer survey concerning environmental attitudes of EU citizens, moreover, reveal that there is wide public support for environmental legislation at EU level and that EU funding should be allocated to support enviromentally friendly activities and developments.
This study assesses people’s awareness, perceptions, and use of chemical products across Europe. It also looks at people’s safety behaviour with respect to chemicals. More specifically it explores their attitudes in dealing with safety instructions, and illustrates their understanding of the hazard symbols and safety language – standardised by the ''CLP Regulation''. Moreover, the survey discloses impressions voiced or felt in the public related to the quality and sources of information on the hazards and safe use of chemicals currently available.
Two Eurobarometer surveys have been commissioned as part of the EU's "Youth on the Move" flagship initiative. Youth on the Move sets out how the EU can reach the Europe 2020 targets through action in the areas of education and training, youth employment, and youth mobility.
The aim of the Flash Eurobarometer survey "Youth on the Move – 319a" was to study young EU citizens’ participation in society, by looking at their involvement in various kinds of organisations, political elections, and different types of activities and projects.
The primary objective of the Flash Eurobarometer survey "Youth on the Move – 319b" was to look at young Europeans' mobility with respect to education and work, and to investigate how they view the attractiveness of vocational and higher education. The research also looked at young people's concerns when seeking employment, and their entrepreneurial ambitions.
An increasing number of Europeans enjoy their holidays: 68% of EU citizens travelled for private reasons in 2010 compared to 65% in 2009. These findings of a new Eurobarometer survey on the attitudes of Europeans towards tourism confirm other indicators that tourism has recovered from economic crisis. Preference still inclines towards traditional tourist destinations (58%), while 28% would like to discover emerging destinations. European Commission Vice-President Antonio Tajani presented today the Eurobarometer at the European Tourism Stakeholders Conference organised by the Hungarian Presidency and the European Commission in Budapest.
This Flash Eurobarometer studied how Europeans use different languages online. While 90% of European internet users prefer to surf the internet in their own language, 55% at least occasionally use a language other than their own when online according to a pan-EU Eurobarometer survey released today. However, 44% feel they are missing interesting information because web pages are not in a language that they understand.
This survey shows that awareness of CO2 capture and storage (CCS) is still low in the majority of Member States covered. Nevertheless, 83% of respondents think CO2 emissions have a high impact on climate change. Public acceptance of CCS is vital for this innovative technology to be implemented on a wide scale across the EU if we are to mitigate climate change. All stakeholders working on the implementation of projects, including government at all levels from local to national, therefore need to communicate clearly about what can be achieved with CCS.
Results of this survey show that consumer awareness and skills are worryingly low. However, there is a considerable potential to empower consumers and thereby to improve consumer welfare and reduce consumer detriment. The internet and the media have a key role to play in consumer empowerment with more than 38% of consumers using the internet to compare products and given the media's capacity to reach citizens directly.
This Eurobarometer survey has been commissioned in order to gain insight in European citizens’ connectedness to other countries. Connectedness is a broad, rich concept; it can take several forms, objective or subjective. The challenge in this research was to identify a category of 'New Europeans': who are they, where can we find them? They were defined as people who live in the EU and have connections with more than just the country where they live. "New Europeans" tend to be hidden in the existing data sources and include children of migrants, mixed couples, international students, retirement migrants and expats.
The Flash Eurobarometer "Attitudes of Europeans towards resource efficiency" aims to investigate citizens' perceptions and practices related to resource efficiency and waste management. It is in direct line with the EU 2020 strategy investigating the resource efficiency potential through prevention, re-use and recycling of natural resources.
The vast majority of Europeans is wiling to compromise on the price and the features of their car in order to reduce harmful emissions, a new Eurobarometer survey has revealed. The survey, conducted in all 27 European Union Member States showed for example about two-thirds (75%) of EU car users said it was likely they would compromise on a car's speed in order to reduce emissions. In addition the majority of car drivers (53%) agreed with existing car charges being replaced by new charging schemes based on the actual use of their vehicle. While most users chose a car because of its convenience, nearly three quarters of EU citizens (71%) said they would consider using public transport more frequently if it would be possible to buy a single ticket covering all possible transport modes.
The objective of Flash Eurobarometer “Iceland and the European Union” was to measure Icelanders’ views on their country’s relationship with the EU. In detail, the topics covered in the survey included: • familiarity with the EU and knowledge of several facts about EU membership; • views about Iceland’s current relations with the EU; • attitudes towards EU membership and support for adopting the euro; • views about the potential consequences of EU membership; • countries seen as models for Iceland and countries that respondents felt closest to; • travel habits and countries visited in the past five years; • favourite channels used to stay informed about current affairs and use of foreign news media.
This Eurobarometer survey (Attitudes of European entrepreneurs towards eco-innovation) investigates the role of eco-innovation in SME responses to the challenge of high material prices and material scarcity.
The main themes in the current report relate to British citizens and their: • self-perceived knowledge of the EU, • need for information on the EU, • opinion about who should be responsible for keeping them informed about the EU,• image of the EU, • evaluation of the costs and benefits of EU membership, • thoughts on what problems should be tackled by the European institutions, • awareness of several benefits and projects related to the EU, • assessment of the importance of European issues at the last general election, • opinion on which party most closely represents their views on the EU.
The survey provides a picture of the retailers' awareness of and compliance with their legal obligations towards consumers. In addition, it gives information on cross-border sales, complaints handling and safety issues.
The survey examines distance and cross-border shopping and EU citizens' perceptions regarding various aspects of consumer protection. It also presents data on financial services provided at distance, environmental impact and purchasing decisions.
The report confirms the impact of financial crisis remains strong in EU citizens’ lives. About a quarter Europeans expect their household finances to get worse in the coming year. Overall, the crisis continues to have a serious impact in southern and eastern European countries. Citizens in the Nordic countries remain relatively optimistic about both the present situation and future economic developments.
A Eurobarometer survey published today on the 4th World Rare Disease Day reveals that Europeans have a relatively accurate understanding of what rare diseases are but detailed knowledge and awareness remain low. The European public expresses strong support for policy initiatives linked to rare diseases at both national and European level, and Europeans see the actions of allocating resources to improve research, ensuring access to care and raising awareness as highly justified. However, significant disparities between Member States remain.
The key findings of this survey are: The vast majority of Estonians thought that the changeover happened smoothly and efficiently. Only a few respondents in Estonia encountered problems when exchanging kroon cash into euros or when withdrawing the new currency from banks in the first week of January 2011. A vast majority also felt informed about the new currency, and a quarter described themselves as very well informed. While about three-quarters said that it was easy to distinguish and manipulate euro banknotes, less than half said the same about coins In terms of concerns linked to the introduction o the euro, almost 6 in 10 Estonian respondents said that price conversions to euros had not been fair (at least sometimes). A small majority of Estonians also thought that the euro will increase inflation in their country.
The main findings of the survey are: The vast majority of Estonians were aware before the start of the dual circulation period that it would expire after two weeks. The seventh day of the changeover period was a turning point; the majority of Estonians did not carry kroons anymore. Already the 10th day after the euro introduction 80% of the consumer transactions were paid in euro.
This present study looks at the developments from the consumer perspective : do Europeans still change their usage pattern or switch off their phones while travelling within the EU? Do they still think that the cost of roaming is unreasonable? Are they aware of the positive changes since 2006? And has this led to a less limited use of roaming services? In other words, the results of this survey give an insight into actual consumer behaviour and how it has changed in the last 5 years, during which the Roaming Regulations have been adopted.
This most recent Flash survey confirms that there has been only slight increase in Europeans' awareness of the single emergency number 112 over the past 4 years, Currently about a quarter of citizens are aware of its existence in the whole European Union. The usefulness of having such a unique number across the European Union remains virtually unquestioned.
On the eve of the first European Council of 4 February 2011, devoted exclusively to energy, it became useful to measure the perception that Europeans have on the energy issue and on the respective roles of the European Union and its Member States in this area. Due to the dates of adoption of the different resolutions, this survey will be divided in two parts, the first one to be published before the European Council and the other one during the month of March. This latter will be focused on more specific questions related to the new EU energy strategy of 2020.
The Innobarometer survey provides policy relevant information direct from business or the general public which is not available from other sources. Launched in September 2000, it complements the statistical analysis in the European Innovation Scoreboard.

 

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