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 Wellington 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, Wellington respondents reported being more actively involved in most items than the global average. The only exception was wearing masks, in which Wellington respondents reported less actively participating.
- When asked about the economic consequences of the pandemic, 25.3% of the Wellington respondents said they would lose more than half of their income if they were to experience a 14-day-quarantine. The global average for this figure was 30%.
- The Wellington respondents experienced a different degree of the following social impacts: medical appointment difficulties (64%), school closings (62%), and workplace closings (49%).
Anxiety and Hope
- If they were infected, the Wellington citizens surveyed would feel more anxious about the impacts on their families (3.64/5) than the world average (3.46/5) and would feel more worried about the impact on their friends (3.55/5) than the global average (3.38/5).
- 56.7% of the Wellington respondents said they would feel anxious if they bumped into someone not wearing a face mask. The proportion was smaller than the global average for the same figure, which was 69%.
- Wellington respondents reported feeling depressed (2.72/4), restless with their sleep (2.49/4), and lonely (2.67/4) at this time during the pandemic. The global average for this figure were 2.62, 2.50, and 2.70.
- In regard to their sense of hope about the future, 7.55% of the Wellington respondents said they have “Never” felt hopeful about the future during the pandemic. In comparison, 11.25% of the global citizens answered the same way.
Citizen’s evaluation of government COVID-19 policies
- Wellington respondents on average gave their own government’s COVID-19 management performance a score of 4.1 points out of 5. The global average was 3.43.
- When asked to give a score to each government, the Wellington respondents gave New Zealand the highest score of 4.07 out of 5 and the United States the lowest score of 2.21 out of 5.
- On a scale of 1 to 5 with higher scores indicated more satisfaction, the Wellington respondents’ average scores of satisfactions with COVID-19 management policies were as follows: providing information on testing and the prevention of the epidemic (3.8), providing medical care assurance for patients (3.76), preventing the spread of infectious diseases (3.81), ensuring the emotional stability of the public (3.57), and ensuring medical staff safety (3.61).
- In general, the Wellington respondents were less likely to agree with school closings, closing of worship places, and an entry ban of foreigners than the global average.
Democracy or Authoritarianism
- On a scale of 1 to 4 with higher scores indicating a higher degree of satisfaction with their government, the Wellington respondents on average rated their satisfaction level 3.19 for human rights and 3.14 for democracy.
- We then asked Wellington 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. Wellington respondents scored 5.62 out of 10, while global citizens scored 5.52 out of 10.
- Regarding COVID-19 risk management, the Wellington respondents were on average in favor of government decisions over citizens' judgments.
Priorities of Quarantine Governance
- Wellington respondents’ level of support for prioritizing basic civil rights in COVID-19 management was 3.93 out of 10 on average, while the world average was 4.45.
- Wellington respondents’ level of agreement that economic recovery is more important than social distancing was 5.09 out of 10. The world average was 4.66.
Impacts of the Global Pandemic on National Level Consequences
- Regarding the national economy, 54.7% of the Wellington 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%. Compared to other cities, Wellington seemed to be less negatively impacted economically.
- As for social trust, 41.6% 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, 51.1% 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, 44.5% 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 Wellington respondents reported trusting their family members (3.4/4) the most, followed by their neighbors (2.94/4), their colleagues (2.87/4), and immigrants (2.41/4).
- Concerning the four groups measured, the Wellington respondents reported an average trust in neighbors and in immigrants more than the global average.
- Of the various institutions providing COVID-19 information, the Wellington respondents reported trusting medical experts (3.21/4) the most.
- Meanwhile, the Wellington respondents showed a relatively high confidence in the information provided by the central government (3.1/4).
Fairness and Representation
- When considering the fairness of income distribution, Wellington respondents ranked 2nd place out of 28 cities with a fairness perception score of 5.53 out of 10.
- When considering the fairness of educational opportunity, Wellington respondents ranked 6th place with a fairness perception score of 5.97.
- When considering the fairness of gender relations, Wellington respondents ranked 6th place with a fairness perception score of 6.11.
- When considering the fairness of political participation, Wellington respondents ranked 6th place with a fairness perception score of 6.02.
- When considering the fairness of minority rights, Wellington respondents ranked 6th place with a fairness perception score of 5.95.
- When considering the fairness of public debate, Wellington respondents ranked 10th place with a fairness perception score of 5.62.
- When considering the fairness of representation of political parties, Wellington respondents ranked 1st place with a fairness perception score of 5.96.
- 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 Wellington respondents on average scored the frequency 3.19 with family members, 2.88 with colleagues/customers, and 2.85 with neighbors. The respective world average scores were 3.21, 2.59, and 2.57.
- Wellington respondents’ level of frequency of using SNS to communicate was 3.02 out of 4 and level of frequency of using messengers to communicate was 3.02 out of 4. In comparison, the respective world average scores were 3.34 and 3.38.
- Concerning how often global citizens discussed about COVID-19, we provided a 4-point scale with higher scores indicating higher frequency. Wellington respondents scored 3.1. 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,” Wellington respondents scored 2.52. As for the statement “We don’t need community. Individual freedom is enough,” Wellington respondent scored 2.47. The respective global averages were 2.54 and 2.29.
- Wellington 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 6.7/10, 6.1/10, and 5.49/10. The respective global averages were 6.95, 6.28, and 5.26.