Welcome to the latest edition of the Ipsos MORI Social Research Institute’s Understanding Society. This issue explores the challenges associated with measuring and understanding the way people think and act. Our global study highlights that people are often wrong about the make-up of their population and the scale of key social issues. We consider possible explanations for the gap between perceptions and reality, alongside perspectives from Ipsos colleagues in Italy and Sweden – the two countries that came top and bottom of our "Index of Ignorance" respectively. To explore misperceptions further, we are delighted to have contributions from Professor Ilya Somin of George Mason University, a leading thinker on the implications of voter ignorance. Mark Earls, author of several books on understanding human behaviour, argues that borrowed opinions are central to human life and help explain why people believe what they do.
We examine some of the ways we handle the perils of polling, particularly in accurately predicting voter turnout. We also explore the external threats that people worry about and whether they should be our biggest concerns. Finally, we look at the impact of real shifts in public perceptions by examining how the European Union is viewed by its citizens.
We hope you enjoy this edition, and if you would like to discuss any of the issues it raises, then please get in touch.
Research into the customs intermediaries sector: Wave 1 summary report
This summary report presents the key findings from the Wave 1 survey conducted by Ipsos MORI into the customs intermediaries sector, as well as the sizing exercise undertaken in partnership with Perspective Economics, on behalf of Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC).
Documentary | BLINDSIDED: How the world fell into a pandemic-shaped recession
BLINDSIDED is the product of a global, video-based research project that – through the eyes of families around the world – captures the critical moments over four months where the world found itself entangled in a pandemic and tumbling into recession. Join us for an exclusive streaming on 10 November.