TBILISI – For the first time since the National Democratic Institute (NDI) began polling in Georgia in 2008, a majority of respondents, 54 percent, say that Georgia is a democracy now. A majority of Georgians, 53 percent, also think their country is headed in the right direction and 73 percent say the government is making changes that matter to them.
Jobs continue to be the top national issue of concern in Georgia at 62 percent, while the number of people identifying themselves as unemployed has increased by four percent since the September 2013 poll (PUBLIC ATTITUDES IN GEORGIA: RESULTS OF A SEPTEMBER 2013 SURVEY). The number of people who identify themselves as unemployed is now at 69 percent. The cost of communal services remains the top local issue at 52 percent.
The percentage of respondents who thought the October 2013 presidential election was well-conducted increased from October 2012 by 10 points, from 79 percent to 89 percent.
Eighty-five percent of Georgians support the government’s goal of joining the European Union and when asked to choose, Georgians expressed strong support for membership in the European Union as opposed to the Eurasian Union by a margin of 68 to 11 percent.
“Georgians strongly support European integration, are optimistic about their democracy, and the direction of their country. While unemployment has increased, Georgians remain strong in their view that the government is making changes that matter to them and cite jobs and the cost of communal services as their top priorities in the lead up to next year’s municipal elections,” said NDI Director Luis Navarro.
The survey looks at issues of public importance, perceptions of democracy and attitudes toward reforms, as well as various domestic and foreign policy issues. The results reflect data collected from November 13 through November 27 in face-to-face interviews with a nationwide representative sample of Georgian speakers that included 3,915 completed interviews. The survey has an average margin of error of +/-2%.
NDI’s survey work is funded by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) and carried out by the Caucasus Research Resource Centers (CRRC).