The POP – Public Opinion Portal - project is the result of a partnership between the Francisco Manuel dos Santos Foundation (FFMS) and the Institute of Social Sciences of the University of Lisbon. It collects aggregate data on the values, attitudes, and behaviours of Europeans in the last 20 years and makes them available to the public in general.

There are many national and international organisations’ websites that make demographic, economic and social data available to non-specialists. In Portugal, Pordata, a project of the Francisco Manuel dos Santos Foundation (hereinafter “FFMS”), has been centralizing, organizing, and disseminating data of this kind about Portugal and Europe.

However, it is not only through this kind of information that a better knowledge about our society can be achieved. What do the Portuguese think, wish and prefer on a variety of issues, from family life to the economy and politics? How can we compare their attitudes and opinions with those of other Europeans? How did those attitudes and opinions change through time? Contrary to what we may think, we do not need answer these questions with mere speculations. In the past three decades, a vast number of international projects have been gathering data about these issues, using meticulously conceived surveys applied to representative samples of the population of European countries.

An important part of the research on sociology, psychology, and political science in Europe has been dedicated to the analysis of such data. But this analysis is also important for those who want to think about the Portuguese society and act upon it: journalists, professors and students, political leaders, association leaders and, potentially, each one of us. After all, we all move in social circles that are inevitably closed. It is very easy to form mistaken perceptions about what our fellow citizens think. If we are able to know a bit better what their attitudes and views are, we can also expand our understanding of the Portuguese and other European societies and make it less biased.

Unfortunately, many of these data are still very scattered and tend to be organized and made available by the organizations that manage them in a way that creates difficulties for non-specialized users. POP tries to overcome this problem by disseminating data produced by the Eurobarometer, the European Values Study and by the European Social Survey . Furthermore, POP provides a data visualization platform that is simple and readable, making the data easy to share through e-mail and social networks. The more diligent user can also work on the graphics designed by the platform or download the data for his or her personal analysis.

The information provided by POP comprises a numbers of subjects whose importance seemed obvious to us: politics, the economy, religion, work, social groups, the family and the individual. Over the next few months, we will introduce new subjects and add more data to the platform. Your critical contribution as users is fundamental to guide us on the selection of new subjects and on the improvement of the POP features.

Explore it, enjoy yourself, think, and bring us your comments and suggestions.

Presentation of the surveys

European Social Survey

The European Social Survey is a biannual academically-driven social survey designed to chart and explain the interaction between Europe's changing institutions and the attitudes, beliefs and behaviour patterns of its diverse populations within a comparative and longitudinal perspective.

The questionnaire is applied to random probability samples of the country’s populations. The universe is composed by those living in each country, with 15 years or older, regardless of their nationality or legal situation. It is composed by a core module and two or three rotating modules. The core module aims to measure continuities and changes in several domains, such as, trust in institutions, social and personal well-being or attitudes towards immigration.

In Portugal the ESS is a consortium between the Institute of Social Sciences of the University of Lisbon (ICS-UL) and the University Institute of Lisbon (ISCTE-IUL). Jorge Vala (ICS-UL) is the National Coordinator.

Centrally the ESS is funded by the European Science Foundation and the European Comission and in Portugal by the Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia and by the ICS-UL itself.

Data for all countries and all rounds is available at http://ess.nsd.uib.no

European Values Study

The European Values Study (EVS) was created in 1978 by the European Foundation for the Study of Values. The project intends to study patterns of values in European countries, in order to analyse eventual values changes in contemporary societies. Different dimensions of values are addressed, namely, religious, family, work or political values.

The EVS studies are carried out every ten years to representative samples of the population of the participating countries, composed by those living in the country that are 18 years or older, regardless of their nationality or legal situation. Currently, around 30 EU and non-EU countries participate in this research network.

The first study was carried out in 1981. Portugal participated in the second study, conducted in 1990, through the Instituto de Estudos para o Desenvolvimento, under the coordination of Luís de França. The third and fourth studies in 1999/2000 and 2008, respectively, were coordinated by Jorge Vala within the ICS-UL research programme Portuguese Social Attitudes.

In Portugal the EVS has been funded by the following institutions: Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian, Fundação Luso-Americana para o Desenvolvimento, Caixa Geral de Depósitos, Banco Comercial Português and also by the ICS-UL.

Aditional information can be retrieved at http://www.europeanvaluesstudy.eu/ and the data download at http://zacat.gesis.org/webview/


The Eurobarometer was created in 1973 by the European Commission in order to monitoring the evolution of public opinion on several aspects of country and comunitary life in the Member States. The surveys address major topics concerning European citizenship: enlargement, social situation, health, culture, information technology, environment, the Euro, defence, among others.

Data from Portugal is available since 1985, enabling the longitudinal analysis of attitudes and behaviours in a comparative perspective for the last 28 years.

The survey is carried out to representative samples of the national populations of the Member States that are 15 years old or more. It is conducted at least two times a year and, usually, the survey as a core module focusing on european unification issues and a specific module about actuality issues.

Aditional information about this project can be consulted at http://ec.europa.eu/public_opinion/index_en.htm and the data can be downloaded at http://zacat.gesis.org/webview/

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