Comparative Panel Survey on the Dynamics of Change: Belief Formation and Political Engagement in Egypt, Tunisia, and Turkey

This project contributes to a mechanismic explanation of change in values and political engagement by launching a panel study in Egypt and Turkey. Comparative surveys were carried out in Egypt in 2011 and Turkey in 2013, using a nationally representative sample of more than 3,000 adults in each country. A second wave of data collection interviewed the same respondents in 2015 in order to assess how changes in their life conditions and the outbreak of events that transpired since the last surveys affected their values and political engagements. This panel study will explain (1) changes in sociopolitical and cultural values; (2) examine how variation in participation in such activities as peaceful demonstrations, political protests, and political violence is linked to changes in (a) inter-group relations, (b) identity and framing, (c) attitudes toward the West and liberal values, (d) religious fundamentalism, (e) dysphoric emotions and personal efficacy, and (f) sources of news information (the Internet, satellite TV, mobiles); (3) assess how people’s perceptions of corruption and trustworthiness of public officials are linked to political action and conflict; and (4) evaluate the implications of this study for peace and national security. Funding is currently being sought for a third wave of data collection.

The SRC IU provided consultation during the second wave of data collection on questionnaire design, sampling design, and technical instrument design and testing. The SRC IU also led interviewer training on-site and implemented several additional data collection components allowing for methodological research regarding interviewer effects and effects of third party presence on data quality. Because this project concerned a panel survey, the SRC IU provided a series of recommendations on tracking panel respondents and minimizing attrition. During and after data collection, the SRC IU provided consultation on data processing, quality control, and analysis.