Projects / Programmes source: ARIS

Slovenian Public Opinion

Research activity

Code Science Field Subfield
5.03.00  Social sciences  Sociology   

Code Science Field
S210  Social sciences  Sociology 

Code Science Field
5.04  Social Sciences  Sociology 
subjective indicators, social development, dimensions of development, social survey, international comparative research, longitudinal research, values, attitudes, public opinion, participation, quality of life, methodological research, context effects, social science infrastructure
Evaluation (rules)
source: COBISS
Data for the last 5 years (citations for the last 10 years) on May 20, 2024; A3 for period 2018-2022
Data for ARIS tenders ( 04.04.2019 – Programme tender , archive )
Database Linked records Citations Pure citations Average pure citations
WoS  103  1,263  1,093  10.61 
Scopus  150  1,867  1,609  10.73 
Researchers (15)
no. Code Name and surname Research area Role Period No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  20792  MSc Živa Broder  Sociology  Technical associate  2020 - 2024  264 
2.  31695  PhD May Doušak  Sociology  Researcher  2020 - 2024  88 
3.  20791  Rebeka Falle Zorman  Sociology  Technical associate  2020 - 2024  280 
4.  50572  PhD Otto Gerdina  Sociology  Researcher  2020 - 2024  133 
5.  03704  PhD Mitja Hafner Fink  Sociology  Head  2020 - 2024  398 
6.  15257  PhD Valentina Hlebec  Sociology  Researcher  2022 - 2024  625 
7.  53553  Ana Jagodic  Sociology  Researcher  2020 - 2022  18 
8.  19140  Ivana Kecman    Technical associate  2020 - 2022  122 
9.  12527  PhD Slavko Kurdija  Sociology  Researcher  2020 - 2024  433 
10.  11258  PhD Brina Malnar  Sociology  Researcher  2020 - 2024  316 
11.  07136  PhD Vladimir Miheljak  Sociology  Researcher  2020 - 2023  1,217 
12.  30248  PhD Karl H. Muller  Sociology  Researcher  2020  155 
13.  02469  PhD Niko Toš  Sociology  Retired researcher  2020 - 2024  1,050 
14.  11326  PhD Samo Uhan  Sociology  Researcher  2020 - 2024  445 
15.  27828  MSc Tina (Martina) Vovk    Technical associate  2020 - 2024  188 
Organisations (1)
no. Code Research organisation City Registration number No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  0582  University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Social Sciences  Ljubljana  1626957  40,577 
The program is a continuation of the existing program Slovenian Public Opinion (SPO) and continuous survey of attitudes among residents of Slovenia, which has been conducted since 1968 within the Public Opinion and Mass Communication Research Centre.   The program is based on the idea of monitoring social development through so called subjective indicators that are usually used in the framework of social surveys. We build on the assumption that development processes in various dimensions of social life should not be considered as excluded from the complexity of social systems and social structures. Thus social development is usually related with the following three dimensions: - Socioeconomic - Cultural - Institutional.   Coming from this starting point our general interest lies in this research question:   In the context of current global social trends, what kind of association between dimensions of development can be revealed by means of subjective indicators?   The social survey (with cooperation in key international social survey programs such as ISSP, EVS/WVS, and ESS) is a fundamental research design by which this research question is planned to be answered. In order to observe the above three dimensions of human and social development, the subjective indicators in the surveys will cover, in particular, the following THEMATIC AREAS: perceptions of social inequalities, attitudes towards marginal groups, self-assessment of social and economic position, identities, satisfaction with life, trust, demographic characteristics, quality of life, value orientations, attitudes toward important social and developmental issues, satisfaction with performance of institutions, perceptions of democracy, citizenship, participation, political choice.   Apart from conceptual aspects, also METHODOLOGICAL ASPECTS are important. Their purpose is to improve the quality of social survey data. Research attention will be focused primarily on the following: - Various types of context effects (question order, social context) - Mode effects and problems of mixed mode data collection.   RESEARCH METHODS of the program are tied to the social survey as a fundamental research design by which the research objectives of the program are planned to be achieved. The survey is planned annually as face-to-face interview of respondents from a sample of permanent residents of Slovenia and on the basis of instruments developed by the SPO program group. Important part is related to cooperation of SPO group in international social science research programs such as ISSP, WVS/EVS and ESS.   RESEARCH OBJECTIVES and expected achievements are: - Answers to a research question on the applicability of subjective indicators - Testing and developing methodological approaches for quality survey research - Building social infrastructure – high-quality databases that are accessible to social science community for further analysis.
Significance for science
Mission   Since its formation Slovenia Public Opinion Project has sought to achieve three main goals: 1) human development and improving the quality of life; 2) upholding standards of scientific excellence; 3) bringing together research and university teaching activities.   Short history   The Slovenian Public Opinion (SPO) research programme began in 1968, when the Public Opinion and Mass Communication Research Centre first fielded the Slovenian Public Opinion survey, the central infrastructural programme for Slovenian social sciences in the domain of attitudinal data. From the outset, the programme’s goal was to create and collect a time series of subjective well-being and quality-of-life indicators and employ them to measure and – if possible – explain general patterns of political, social, cultural and economic attitudes and behaviours of the population. General purpose surveys have now become an indispensable source of comparative findings for social scientists, they provide an often superior research framework for developing theories, charting social trends and informing polices.   In the period 1968 - 2019, the SPO research team has carried out 80 nation-wide face-to-face academic surveys, half of them were cross-national cooperations. To date, SPO principal mission remains monitoring relevant structural characteristics and processes in Slovenian society within the broader context of the European and global environment. For academic and policy analysts, SPO data represent high quality basis for multilevel analysis of social dynamic and important incentive for the testing and development of middle-range social theories.   SPO as a social science infrastructure   Since Durkheim’s classical study of suicide as a social phenomenon and Weber’s study of the role of protestant ethics in the development of capitalism, the comparative method has established itself as one of the key modes of scientific analysis. Yet while classical sociologists acquired their data from official statistics or use heuristic rather than empirical approaches, modern social scientists have large volumes of dedicated data available for comparative analysis, particularly in the form of general purpose cross-national surveys, large cooperative projects that began to emerge in 1980s as early versions of ‘infrastructures’ for the international social science community.   In Slovenian context, SPO has maintained such infrastructural role since 1968 and even more so after 1991, when it joined four major international collaborations that have established themselves as the leading source of attitudinal comparative findings: World Values Survey, European Values Study, The International Social Survey Programme and the European Social Survey. The latter has been the SPO team’s main international collaboration during the last decade in terms of academic impact, methodological quality and methodological innovation. First fielded in 2002, European Social Survey is an academically driven cross-national survey that measures the attitudes, beliefs and behaviour patterns of diverse populations in Europe and aims to spread higher standards of rigour in cross-national research.   Through participation in international collaborations the SPO research team has gathered state of the art expertise in conducting cross-national survey research, making itself into a methodological knowledge hub for both students and researchers.   National scientific significance   International comparison is intrinsically more valuable in small countries where, for example, regional comparisons within the country are less of an option. Therefore, from funders’ perspective there is rarely a research format that offers as much added value as a cross-national survey. To illustrate our point, a meta-analyst from Slovenia, one of the countries that fielded the first nine rounds of the European Social Survey would have around 1500 academic publications available that include their national da
Significance for the country
Facilitating knowledge transfer and informing policy making is generally regarded as the expected type of social impact in social sciences. Since its beginnings, the Slovenian Public Opinion programme has sought to produce ‘research impact’ in the form of broader societal returns beyond academia, to generate knowledge that will benefit society as a whole, stimulate new approaches to social issues or inform public debate and policy-making. The following is an outline of two societal areas where the results of the SPO programme can be most directly observed.   1. Monitoring the quality of life, formulating national policies and developmental strategies   Policy-makers are the most important target group of non-academic users, having a possibility to directly employ SPO data and findings as information basis to formulate policies, strategies and policy measures, identify of pressing social issues or plan public information campaigns. Generally speaking, SPO programme results can be employed in a variety of policy areas, most notably welfare, immigration and economic policies. The area of quality of life and subjective well-being is particularly well supported by the SPO longitudinal indicators such as social and political trust, life satisfaction, happiness, social networks, subjective health, household subjective income situation and similar. A wide range of social indicators provided by SPO enables analysts to assess the extent of non-democratic tendencies, identify areas of likely social tensions and conflicts, observe the trends in persistent social inequalities and social integration etc., giving them a possibility for agenda setting and triggering pre-emptive policy measures.   A specific example of using SPO based findings in the policy process is collaboration with The Institute of Macroeconomic Analysis and Development of the Republic of Slovenia (IMAD), an independent government office. Wider stakeholders include various ministries and departments of the government of Slovenia. The reports that use data from the SPO programme are broad and encompass a wide array of topic. To some extent, the indicators that stem directly from the SPO can target a specific ministry. However, concepts like ‘happiness’ are relevant to the portfolios of multiple ministries. The data need is twofold: Slovenia wants to know how well it is progressing in terms of development over time on a set of different indicators. A development strategy is formulated and adopted every ten years and the development reports monitor the progress towards achieving the goals set out in this strategy. At the same time, the SPO programme data allows for a comparison to other EU-countries. These figures bear great meaning, as Slovenia is actively seeking to reduce its development gap with the EU and finds this an important benchmark in its own development. As such, the SPO programme provides high quality data on a large number of the indicators that feed into both the strategy document as well as the monitoring reports. The use of the SPO data has been consistent over the years. The data feature in a series of monitoring reports published annually and, in some instances, form part of a new ten-year strategy.   Some examples of the outputs made by the IMAD:   • Indicators of Wellbeing in Slovenia: although this project was recently halted, it ran from 1996 to 2015 and used many ESS indicators.   • Development Report: The Development Report is an annual publication that monitors the fulfilment of strategic guidelines for Slovenia’s development in economic, social and environmental areas. Specific SPO indicators used: trust in others; trust in institutions; satisfaction with democracy.   • Development Strategy: Slovenia’s Development Strategy sets out the vision and objectives of Slovenia’s development, including five development priorities with the corresponding action plans. At the forefront of the new Strategy is the overall welfare of every individual. Theref
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