City extends its agreement with European Social Survey • City, University of London

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City, the University of London will continue to host the headquarters of the European Social Survey until May 2025, under a new agreement.

The European Social Survey (ESS) is a biennial transnational survey carried out across Europe to measure the attitudes, beliefs and behaviors of people in over thirty countries.

The ESS has been run by a team at the City since 2003, housed at the School of Arts and Social Sciences and attached to the Department of Sociology.

The new agreement supports City’s commitment to collaborative European research projects, even after the UK’s decision to leave the European Union. The renewal was made possible following the UK’s commitment to join the Horizon Europe research framework program.

ESS director Professor Rory Fitzgerald, who was appointed a fellow of the UK Academy of Social Sciences last year, gave his reaction to the new deal:

“I am delighted that City, University of London continues to host the headquarters of the European Social Survey.

“City played a central role in building the European Social Inquiry – from a fledgling project to a fully operational European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC) with 25 members – the highest of all European consortia of research infrastructures (ERIC).

“As a university with an international vocation, City is the ideal home for SSE. “

City, University of London President Professor Anthony Finkelstein CBE said:

“Since the project has been hosted by the City, the survey has continued to grow. With the support of the university, the ESS has grown from a project fully funded by the European Commission to a sustainable research infrastructure.

“It is now one of the leading social surveys in the world, offering high levels of academic, educational and political impact. I am sure that the project will continue to contribute significantly to our understanding of how Europe is developing socially and politically ”.

About ESS

Housed within the city’s sociology department, the ESS has been implemented in up to 30 participating countries every two years since 2002 and includes around 200 questions.

The questions asked in each round relate to media consumption, institutional and social trust, democracy, government and politics, national and ethnic identity, health and welfare, discrimination, immigration, religion, the scale of human values ​​and a series of socio-demographic measures.

By asking these same questions of a sample of respondents who represent the entire population of each country every two years, comparisons between countries and over time can easily be made.

With each round of the survey, two additional topics are covered in more depth, following an open call to academics working in any scientific discipline.

Two topics were specifically addressed in Round 9 – questions were asked about timing of life events (repeated from Round 3, 2006/07) and justice and equity, in the context of income.

Topics previously covered include climate change, the welfare state, subjective health, immigration, ageism, democracy, and well-being.

Survey data is collected through one-hour face-to-face interviews conducted by survey agencies or research institutes in each country.

Since 2013, ESS is a European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC) – a legal entity funded by national funding bodies in all participating countries.

The statutes of the European Social Inquiry ERIC stipulate that the host establishment agreement is renewed every four years.

The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) remains the main funder of SSE, supported by funding agencies in 25 other European countries.

Other funding for certain projects has been provided by the European Union under its Horizon 2020 research and innovation program.

ESS data is available free for non-commercial use – the data can be viewed and analyzed online or downloaded for use in statistical software such as SPSS, Stata or R.

All data and documentation is available on the ESS website, including an online tool that allows registered users to view, weight and analyze survey data.

Since the publication of the first dataset in 2004, more than 180,000 people have signed up to access European Social Survey data, with a preliminary analysis from the Google Scholar indexing finding that nearly 5,500 academic publications include a substantial use of ESS data (2003-20).


Follow the ESS on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Youtube, or to register for free, visit the ESS website.

For more information on ESS, contact [email protected].

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