Thursday, November 13, 2008

Political Data and Surveys

I was reminded this week that not everyone knows about the Sant Maral Foundation in Mongolia. This is a non-profit organization that collects political data and conducts surveys of the Mongolian population. Its most well known survey is the POLITBAROMETER which surveys approximately 1200 randomly selected individuals in Ulaanbaatar and the countryside on a series of questions related to politics and social conditions in the country. One example question is "How you evaluate your nearest future?" to which a 75% of respondents chose "Optimistic" in the most recent survey. Another question is "Do you support the creation of coalition government?" to which almost 60% of respondents answered "Yes." This survey, as well as the many others Sant Maral produces, provide a very interesting glimpse into the social and political opinions of ordinary people.

Sant Maral has a website at which is arguably a bit spartan in terms of information. The foundation has not taken to publishing its survey results online, but there seems to be every indication that they will provide survey results if requested by e-mail or in-person. The ACMS receives regular survey results via e-mail because it is a member of the Business Council of Mongolia.

Many of their surveys date back to the early 1990s, so they represent an important wealth of data about attitudes since the dissolution of the Communist government. If a researcher is doing work on politics or perceptions of social change in Mongolia, then that researcher should definitely contact Sant Maral.

No comments: