Most global citizens (85%) say world needs new international agreements and Institutions led by world’s democracies

Respondents Believe World’s Superpowers (Russia, China and US) are Least Likely to Comply with New Institutions and Agreements.

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  • Darrell Bricker Global Head of Public Affairs - Ipsos
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Most (85%) respondents to a global poll of over 32,000 people across 33 countries say that the world needs new international agreements and institutions that should be led by democratic countries. The poll conducted by Ipsos for the Halifax International Security Forum also found that the world’s largest superpowers are the countries that many believe are the least likely to comply with the direction of these new institutions, thereby undermining their efficacy.

While a growing proportion (62%, +4 points since 2021) acknowledge that the world’s international organizations (where countries get together to discuss and deal with the big challenges facing the world today such as the pandemic, climate change and international peace) have done a good job of dealing with these challenges, there also exists the belief that the world can do better. Most (85%, +2 pts) are of the opinion that the world needs new international agreements and institutions that should be led by democratic countries.

In fact, with a global average of 80% (+3 pts), most say they would have more respect for global institutions and agreements if democratic nations had more influence over them than authoritarian nations. Notably, Ukrainians (92%, new this year) are most likely to feel this way, followed by those living in Indonesia (91%), Peru (88%, +4 pts), Poland (86%, +7 pts) and South Korea (86%, +1 pt). Conversely, those in Japan (63%, -2 pts), the United States (73%, +2 pts), France (74%, -2 pts), Hungary (74%, -2 pts, Italy (75%, +1 pt) and, notably, China (75%, -8 pts) are least likely to agree.

Global Citizens Say World’s Superpowers are Least Likely to Comply with New Institutions and Agreements

The desire for new institutions and agreements is approaching consensus among those surveyed, but many appear skeptical that the world’s superpowers would abide by those agreements, possibly putting the effectiveness of them into question. When asked which countries in the world would be least likely to comply, Russia (44%, + 23 pts), China (31%, -1 pt) and the United States (19%, -5 pts) were identified as the most-plausible dissenters. In last year’s survey, China held top spot, but Russia has recently catapulted into first position, likely attributable to its invasion of Ukraine.

It is noteworthy that the US has placed ahead of authoritarian regimes such as Iran (11% + 3 pts) and North Korea (10%, +1 pt). Just 2% (unchanged) identified Canada as least likely to comply with new agreements and institutions. 

World Divided on whether US Remains Most Reliable Leader for Democratic Nations

The world is divided on whether the US continues to be the most reliable leader for democratic nations in the pursuit of positive outcomes for the world. Six in ten (global country average: 59%) agree that the US retains its position as the most reliable leader of the democratic world, but this leaves 41% who do not agree.

Those living in Ukraine (85%), India (78%) and Poland (78%) are most likely to agree. Two in three (67%) Americans agree. Australians (50%), Belgians (50%) and Canadians (50%) are evenly split on the notion. And only a minority of those in Hungary (47%), Sweden (47%), Turkey (44%) and China (43%) believe that the US is the most reliable leader for democratic nations.

About this study

These are the results of a 33-market survey conducted by Ipsos on its Global Advisor online platform. Ipsos interviewed a total of 32,507 adults aged 18-74 in the United States, Canada, Malaysia, South Africa, and Turkey, 20-74 in Thailand, 21-74 in Indonesia, and 16-74 in 27 other markets between Friday, September 23 and Friday, October 7, 2022.


Table of content

  1. Nuclear, biological or chemical attack now seen as top threat facing the world
  2. Worry about possible worldwide conflict rises
  3. Canada, Germany remain top countries expected to have a positive influence on world affairs
  4. Most global citizens (85%) say world needs new international agreements and Institutions led by world’s democracies

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The author(s)
  • Darrell Bricker Global Head of Public Affairs - Ipsos

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