During the recent years Georgian state openly recognizes pro-western course and aspiration to join NATO.
The goal of IPM Research was to identify how well the official state position depicts the attitude of people. The company applied polls conducted in autumn 2016 and surveys carried out in the previous years. In each case 1200 people were interviewed in the whole country.
The index was calculated that defined public attitude. The question was whether the respondents supported pro-western course and western values or were for deepening relations with northern neighbor. The index depends on the answers to the questions that directly or indirectly concern Georgia's development direction and attitude toward NATO and Russia. The index changes from 0 (pro-Russian attitude, negative attitude toward NATO) to 1 (distinct pro-western position anti-Russian attitude).
Chart 1. Dynamics of pro-western orientation index
|We see the index change within 7 years. According to the current year data the index is 0.6. The same indicator was in 2009. In 2013 it was lower - 0.5. The index 0.6 depicts public attitude as moderately pro-western.|
We resorted to the additional analysis for the index meaning. 4 segments of population were identified (charter 2).
|As we see 9% of the population has distinct anti-Russian attitude, The main portion of this segment is represented by young people of the middle class. The biggest segment is represented by pro-western respondents, however they do not have too negative attitude toward Russia. Quite a big portion of population has neutral position or has no position at all. This figure represents 35%. 11% of respondents have anti-western attitude. People of this segment think that Georgia must have friendly relations with Russia and it is unacceptable to strife to the west. It is worth noting that the segment is represented by citizens aged above 55, mainly men with low income. This segment reduced compared with the previous years. For instance in 2013 the number of people with distinct pro-Russian orientation amounted to 14% and it was reflected on the final index (see chart 1).|
Finally we can conclude that over half of population (about 55%) support pro-western direction of our country. In 2013 this indicator was lower by 5-6%. A significant portion (35%) of respondents has no certain position.