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4th ESS Conference

The University of Mannheim hosts the upcoming 4th ESS International Conference on 15-17 April 2019. On Monday 15 afternoon, Ruud Luijkx, Loek Halman and Vera Lomazzi chair the session  F1: “Bridging ESS and EVS to study social attitudes, norms and values in a troubled Europe”.

Cross-sectional surveys  in Europe such as the European Social Survey (ESS) and the European Values Study (EVS), support scholars aiming at studying human values in comparative perspective, both across countries and over time, by providing high quality data concerning several life domains. The ESS collects data through rotating modules every 2 years since 2002 in a varying number of countries (the maximum was 31 participating countries in 2008), while the EVS investigates the Europeans’ values since 1981 in more than 40 countries every 9 years (the maximum was 47 participating countries in 2008).

While keeping their different goals and identities, these two programmes provide measures to investigate common dimensions in the domains of social and institutional trust; political participation; life satisfaction and happiness; national identity; religiosity; attitudes towards immigration, gender roles, climate change, welfare, and others. Scholars often exploit this commonality to enlarge the coverage of their studies, for example combining the datasets to obtain a longer time-series or a larger number of countries.

The session proposes papers that adopt the combined use of ESS and EVS in the comparative study of values and studies investigating the potential bridging of EVS measures and ESS items from methodological perspective:

F1.1. Malnar, Brina: Informing cross-survey cooperation: Exploring patterns of academic usage in four general purpose surveys

F1.2. Lomazzi, Vera & Luijkx, Ruud: A first comparison of questions from the European Values Study and the core module of the European Social Survey

F1.3. Ortmanns, Verena & Schneider, Silke L.: Comparing the measurement of educational attainment in ESS and EVS

F1.4. Biolcati, Ferruccio & Molteni, Francesco: Using cumulative datasets to study religious change in Europe: a focus on ESS and EVS

F1.5. Matejková, Alexandra: Gender differences in the importance of work and family roles in Slovak Republic: Concepts about “ideal” family relationships in ESS and EVS comparison

More information on the ESS conference, including the preliminary program, can be found on the European Social Survey website.

In Zuck we trust?

Today it is Facebook’s 15th birthday. The social networking site, founded by Mark Zuckerberg as an online photo book for his classmates at Harvard University, has experienced a sharp growth, but was confronted with severe challenges last year (e.g. Cambridge Analytica scandal). To what extent did the controversy surrounding data leaks damage trust in social media? Sociologists Angelica Maineri (EVS central team) and Tim Reeskens (National Program director of EVS in the Netherlands), from Tilburg University (NL), published a piece on this issue in the Dutch blog Sociale Vraagstukken. The study combines data collected before the controversy on data breach started in the framework of the European Values Study 2017 in the Netherlands, with a survey proposed to the same respondents after the debate burst out.

The authors find that social media is the least trusted institution among the ones proposed to the respondents in the framework of the EVS 2017. It is also found that trust in political institutions spills over to trust in social media, in accordance with the “trust-nexus” hypothesis. Yet, only 15% of respondents display less trust in social media after the controversy, while 65% remain table and 20% even show an increment. So far, theoretical explanations failed to explain this change patterns. The data do show that respondents with little confidence in politics have increased confidence in social media. Perhaps it is true that people who oppose the government and mainstream media turn out to see more opportunities in social media to go against that government. Only additional research can unravel this complexity.

First Pre-release of EVS2017

The first pre-release of EVS2017 is now available.

As for the other waves, EVS data is archived at the Data Archive for Social Sciences at GESIS – Leibniz Institute for Social Sciences, Cologne.

The goal of the EVS Pre-Releases is to make the current data of the European Values Study, which  back in the field since September 2017, quickly available for research. They are lean products created by the research group at Tilburg University, theparticipating countries and the GESIS data archive. The data is based on thequestions of the Master Questionnaire but does not yet include all harmonizedand derived variables. The documentation provides information on the creationand processing of national data, but still in a compact format.

The first version of the integrated dataset contains data from 16 countries (Armenia, Bulgaria, Germany, Georgia, Iceland, Croatia, Netherlands, Austria, Poland, Russia, Switzerland, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Czech Republic, Belarus). More than 22.000 persons, selected through random sampling, were interviewed personally (face-to-face).

Here you can find data and documentation.

Current version of the integrated dataset: Release v1-0-0 as of December 2018, doi:10.4232/1.13090.
Documentation: as of December 2018.

For further information on data download, see Data Access

One goal of EVS Pre-releases is to improve the quality of the data and its documentation. Information on errors or omissions in the data and the documentation is very welcome. Please report any problems to the EVS Data Service at GESIS, Cologne. Many thanks!

European Values Education

Earlier this week, Inge Sieben (Tilburg University, NL) toasted with partners from Fontys, KU Leuven (Belgium), Matei Bel University in Banska Bystrica (Slovakia) en Ege Universitesi Izmir (Turkey) after a day of hard work to prepare an Erasmus+ proposal on European Values Education using EVS data.