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Monday, February 21, 2011

Your Annual CheckUp on the State of Your State

This week, we begin the latest update on our "State of the States" series, based on Gallup Daily tracking data collected throughout 2010.

Just as in the past, we'll report state-level data on the most important political, economic, and wellbeing metrics we track daily. In every story, we'll reveal which states are doing best and which states are doing worst. With three years of data collection completed, we'll also report on how things have -- or haven't -- changed since 2008 and 2009.

We begin today with Jeffrey M. Jones' always fascinating update on political party affiliation by state. Later this week, we'll report on President Obama's job approval rating by state and ideology by state.

Next week, we'll report state-level data on our key economic metrics: job creation, economic confidence, and underemployment.

After that, we'll take a state-level look at key wellbeing metrics, including overall wellbeing, obesity and diabetes, and health insurance coverage.

All of these metrics will be updated in tandem with the story releases in our enhanced State of the States interactive.

We'll follow up our States of the States series with a closer look at the wellbeing of our U.S. cities, including revealing the cities with the highest and lowest wellbeing, obesity rates, and overall optimism.

To make sure you get every story as soon as it is published, sign up to receive "All Gallup Headlines" via e-mail alert or RSS feed. Additionally, if there is a measure we track daily that you would like us to report on at the state or city level, please send your suggestion to

Monday, February 14, 2011

Insights From Gallup's Annual World Affairs Survey

Gallup's annual World Affairs survey, conducted in February of each year, is one of my favorites. It is in this survey that we ask Americans about issues of global magnitude including how they view other countries and how the world views the U.S.

This year's survey came at a particularly good time, allowing us to provide fresh numbers on how Americans view Egypt (less favorably this year than ever before) and their perception of how important what happens there to the U.S. (not as important as what happens in eight other countries).

On the broad measure of favorability, Iran and North Korea fare worst while Canada and Great Britain fare best. While Americans are pretty fixed on their least- and most-favored countries, this year they are notably more negative about Mexico, Afghanistan, and Pakistan and notably more positive about France and South Korea.

While China is in the middle of the pack on overall favorability, Americans see it as the world's clear No. 1 economically. In a stunning shift from a year ago, Americans are far more likely to say China is the world's leading economic power in the world today and that it will be 20 years from now than they are to say this about the U.S. The value of asking the same question every year is that it allows us to identify emerging trends in attitudes and also to distinguish short-term variations from sustained changes in public opinion.

In the coming days, we'll continue to release new findings from this year's World Affairs survey, including Americans' views on:

  • The U.S.' position in the world today
  • How much world leaders respect President Barack Obama
  • How involved the U.S. should be in solving the world's problems
  • The country they consider to be the U.S.' greatest enemy
  • What foreign trade means for America
To receive these stories as soon as they are published, sign up to get our foreign affairs news via e-mail alert or RSS feed.

To view the complete calendar for surveys Gallup conducts annually, as well as all of our annual trends, please visit Trends A-Z.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

British Muslims Feel, Well, British

Guest blog by Magali Rheault, Gallup Senior Analyst

British Muslims don’t feel their fellow citizens believe them to be British.

As the Gallup researcher who focuses on European Muslim issues, I was struck by the conflicting message about Britain’s Muslim population in Prime Minister David Cameron’s speech in Munich last Saturday. The Prime Minister was eager to clear the “muddled thinking” about Muslims, religiosity, and violence as he told the crowd of dignitaries that “terrorism is not linked to any one religion or ethnic group.” For a couple of minutes, I was tempted to think Cameron was quoting from Gallup’s Coexist Index report about the lack of evidence between religion and acts of violence. But when he linked identity to sympathy for violence, the overall speech quickly became puzzling.

The Coexist Index report, released in 2009, paints a compelling British Muslim experience that’s timely and imperatively worth retelling. The key takeway from the report is that European Muslims, including those from the United Kingdom, embrace their countries but their countries don’t embrace them.

Many results underscore this main message, but I’ll highlight just three:

  • British Muslims identify strongly not only with their religion but also with their country. In fact, they’re more likely than non-Muslim Britons to say they identify strongly with the United Kingdom.

  • When asked about their ideal choice of neighborhood, British Muslims are more likely than non-Muslim Britons to want to live in areas with people of different backgrounds.

  • Those who say religion is an important part of their life are as likely as those who don't to reject attacks on civilians.

One more thought that should help clear the "muddled thinking": British Muslims (7%) are far less likely than their fellow citizens (56%) to be “thriving” in life. This suggests that “achieving true cohesion” has more to do with jobs and economic opportunities for all rather than a perceived lack of allegiance to one’s country. These findings paint a very clear picture, British Muslims shouldn't have to choose between religious and national identity markers for the larger society to embrace them as an integral part of the United Kingdom.

To learn more about Gallup's research on Muslim populations worldwide, please visit the Abu Dhabi Gallup Center.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Empirical Insight on Life in Egypt, Tunisia, and More

Gallup's global wellbeing metrics help us to better and scientifically understand people's wellbeing around the world -- including those currently seeing widespread public protests.

My colleague Jon Clifton and I will release a story soon with a look at the wellbeing in Egypt and Tunisia, reporting that the percentage of people who were "thriving" in these countries fell over the past few years, even as GDP increased. (Update: read the story.)

This just one of dozens of measures Gallup uses to assess the wellbeing of world populations. You can explore more data in the Gallup WorldView. (Update: This entire Washington Post piece is based on data from the Gallup WorldView.)

Additionally, here are some findings we've already published about these countries and the region:

As always, we'll continue to publish additional stories adding empirical insight to the global conversation about the events in Egypt and beyond. To get new stories as soon as we publish them, sign up for our world e-mail alerts and RSS feeds.

To learn more about Gallup's work in this area, contact or call 202.715.3030.

You can also learn more by visiting the Abu Dhabi Gallup Center.

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