Australians’ attitudes to important issues

A message from Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Ethics) Professor Hayden Ramsay:

A key member of the Ethics Portfolio is the PM Glynn Institute, led by its Director, Dr Michael Casey. In June 2022, the Institute commissioned The PM Glynn Survey on Hope, Trust and Belonging 2022 to explore Australians’ attitudes on a number of important issues. The questions substantially overlapped with those of the Institute’s first survey, conducted in 2018, allowing for changes in attitudes to be noted. The survey research was undertaken by an independent survey company, with a sample of 3,000 people randomly selected and nationally representative on age, gender and location.

While the full report is lengthy and detailed, the Institute is able to provide a brief overview.

The PM Glynn Survey on Hope, Trust and Belonging 2022 summary

The 2022 survey focused on seven key topics:

  • The impact of COVID-19
  • Flourishing
  • Values
  • Religion
  • Rights
  • Aspirations and current circumstances
  • The direction in which Australia is heading.

Some of the survey findings include:

  • The impact of COVID-19
    •  While 46 per cent of respondents praised the efforts by government and health authorities to contain the virus, 54 per cent were critical of excessive government and health controls, or failure to act quickly enough.
  • Flourishing
    • Applying the 10-point scale of the Harvard Flourishing Measure, the survey showed:
      • Australians collectively have an overall flourishing score of 6.7.
      • Scores are highest for those who actively practise a religion (7.3) and lowest among nonbelievers (6.4).
      • Among age groups, 18–24-year-olds recorded the lowest scores (6.2) and the 65+ group the highest (7.3).
      • Women recorded slightly lower flourishing scores overall compared with men (6.6 to 6.8).
  • Values
    • The values of caring and equality were seen by respondents as the values that carried Australians through the pandemic. Among the value sets rated as extremely or very important by the highest percentages were:
      • caring for family and friends (89 per cent)
      • trying to be a good person (82 per cent)
      • fairness and treating people equally (80 per cent)
      • social and environmental responsibility (62 per cent).

I was particularly pleased to have Harvard Human Flourishing Program included in the survey, given its partnership with ACU . A full summary of findings will be published in May, with other papers dedicated to the various survey topics published over the course of this year. I’m sure PM Glynn would be delighted to receive any comments or enquiries when the full survey is published next month.

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