This report deals with various issues regarding the “post-COVID-19 era,” coined as such on account of its social, political, and economic impacts. The world is changing in a new direction, which signifies a metamorphosis of the global society. This report draws on the World COVID-19 Pandemic and Citizen Life Survey conducted between the 23rd of April and the 5th of June 2020 with 15.312 respondents. The sample was collected via a Computer Assisted Web Interview (CAWI) applying the stratified sampling method. As a global survey, this report outlines the responses of citizens from 30 cities, and the questions focus on their responses to COVID-19, their varying behavior in the course of the pandemic, their confidence in authorities, their support and/or opposition for stringency measures, and their political attitudes. In this particular file, the case of Osaka will be presented. For more detailed survey results, please refer to the attached file.
Review of COVID-19 Pandemic
- Of a list of individual disease prevention measures, Osaka respondents reported being involved in all items more than the global average.
- When asked about the economic consequences of the pandemic, 26.7% of the Osaka respondents said they would lose more than half of their income if they were to experience a 14-day-quarantine. The global average for the same figure was 30%.
- The Osaka respondents experienced a different degree of the following social impacts: medical appointment difficulties (19%), school closings (33%), and workplace closings (26%). The proportion of Osaka respondents experiencing these situations was significantly less than the global average.
Anxiety and Hope
- If they were infected, the Osaka citizens surveyed would feel more anxious about the impacts on their families (4.29/5) than the world average (3.46/5) and would feel more worried about the impact on their friends (4.19/5) than the global average (3.38/5).
- 23.5% of the Osaka respondents said they would feel “Not Very Anxious” or “Not Anxious at all” if they bumped into someone not wearing a face mask. The global average for the same figure is 29%.
- Osaka respondents reported feeling depressed (2.78/4), restless with their sleep (3.01/4), and lonely (3.07/4) at this time during the pandemic. The respective global average scores were 2.62, 2.50, and 2.70. It was characteristic that Osaka respondents experienced negative emotions during the pandemic more often than the global average.
- In regard to their sense of hope about the future, a large proportion of Osaka respondents (43.03%) said they have “Never” felt hopeful about the future during the pandemic. In comparison, only 11.25% of the global citizens answered the same way.
Citizen’s evaluation of government COVID-19 policies
- Osaka respondents on average gave their own government’s COVID-19 management performance a score of 3.1 points out of 5. The global average was 3.43.
- When asked to give a score to each government, the Osaka respondents gave Taiwan the highest score of 3.94 out of 5 and Brazil the lowest score of 1.99 out of 5.
- Considering five aspects of COVID-19 management policies (providing information on testing and the prevention of the epidemic, providing medical care assurance for patients, preventing the spread of infectious diseases, ensuring the emotional stability of the public, and ensuring medical staff safety), the Osaka respondents were least satisfied with ensuring the medical staff safety (2.24/5).
- In general, the Osaka respondents were less likely to agree with school closings and more likely to agree with an entry ban of foreigners than the global average.
- Among the four stringency measures (school closings, closing of worship places, an entry ban of foreigners, and an internal moving ban), Osaka respondents agreed with school closings the least (2.98/4).
Democracy or Authoritarianism
- On a scale of 1 to 4 with higher scores indicating a higher degree of satisfaction with their government, the Osaka respondents on average rated their satisfaction level 2.65 for human rights and 2.54 for democracy.
- We then asked Osaka citizens their opinions about emergency measures. On a scale of 1 to 10 with higher scores indicating a stronger belief that emergency measures will move the society more toward a democratic society, Osaka respondents scored 5.43 out of 10, while global citizens scored 5.52 out of 10.
- Regarding COVID-19 risk management, the Osaka respondents were on average in favor of citizens' judgments over government decisions.
- Meanwhile, the Osaka respondents supported rule by order more than supported rule of law.
Priorities of Quarantine Governance
- Osaka respondents’ level of support for prioritizing basic civil rights in COVID-19 management was 4.26 out of 10 on average, while the world average was 4.45.
- Osaka respondents’ level of agreement that economic recovery is more important than social distancing was 4.75 out of 10. The world average was 4.65.
- Impacts of the Global Pandemic on National Level Consequences
- Regarding the national economy, 72.9% of the Osaka respondents said the COVID-19 pandemic has had a “Quite large negative impact” or a “Severe negative impact.” In comparison, the global average for this figure was 76.7%.
- As for social trust, 60.6% said the pandemic has had a “Quite large negative impact” or a “Severe negative impact.” The global average for this figure was 56.1%.
- In the case of living standards, 70.7% said the pandemic has had a “Quite large negative impact” or a “Severe negative impact.” The global average for this figure was 65.4%.
- On the quality of democracy, 50.8% said that the pandemic has had a “Quite large negative impact” or a “Severe negative impact.” The global average for this figure was 45.5%.
- The Osaka respondents reported trusting their family members (3.47/4) the most, followed by their colleagues (2.72/4), their neighbors (2.6/4), and immigrants (1.81/4).
- On average, Osaka respondents reported trusting their neighbors, their colleagues, and immigrants less than the global average.
- Of the various institutions providing COVID-19 information, the Osaka respondents reported trusting medical experts (2.94/4) the most and social media (2.02/4) the least.
Fairness and Representation
- When considering the fairness of income distribution, Osaka respondents ranked 14th place out of 28 cities with a fairness perception score of 4.75 out of 10.
- When considering the fairness of educational opportunity, Osaka respondents ranked 12th place with a fairness perception score of 5.66.
- When considering the fairness of gender relations, Osaka respondents ranked 23rd place with a fairness perception score of 5.16.
- When considering the fairness of political participation, Osaka respondents ranked 14th place with a fairness perception score of 5.48.
- When considering the fairness of minority rights, Osaka respondents ranked 20th place with a fairness perception score of 5.16.
- When considering the fairness of public debate, Osaka respondents ranked 27th place with a fairness perception score of 4.36.
- When considering the fairness of representation of political parties, Osaka respondents ranked 23rd place with a fairness perception score of 4.24.
- On a scale of 1 to 5 with higher scores indicating a higher frequency of communication with their acquaintances (family members, colleagues/customers, neighbors), the Osaka respondents on average scored the frequency 3.13 with family members, 2.22 with colleagues/customers, and 2.54 with neighbors. The respective world average scores were 3.21, 2.59, and 2.57.
- Osaka respondents’ level of frequency of using SNS to communicate was 3.48 out of 4 and level of frequency of using messengers to communicate was 3.28 out of 4. In comparison, the respective world average scores were 3.34 and 3.38.
- We then asked how often global citizens discussed about COVID-19. We provided a 4-point scale with higher scores indicating higher frequency. Osaka respondents scored 3.01. In comparison, the global average was 3.21.
Human Life after COVID-19
- On a scale of 1 to 4 with higher scores indicating more agreement that the “community is doomed to lose its function,” Osaka respondents scored 2.43. As for the statement “We don’t need community. Individual freedom is enough,” Osaka respondent scored 2.07. The respective global averages were 2.54 and 2.29.
- Osaka respondents’ average degrees of agreement to the following statements predicting what the future will be like after the pandemic, “The future cannot be predicted,” “The life will be more unstable,” and “We should realize the fundamental uncertainty of life,” were 7.35/10, 6.25/10, and 5.91/10. The respective global averages were 6.95, 6.28, and 5.26.