Waylaid Dialectic

November 24, 2010

Should we give aid — what does the public think?

Filed under: Aid — terence @ 2:49 pm
Tags: ,

Just a bookmark for myself really…

The following sites detail public opinion surverys (of developed countries) where people are asked their views about aid:


UK (recent)


NZ (and detailed here)

A couple of interesting points to note from the NZ stats:

1. 69% of New Zealanders surveyed in 2007 think aid should be targeted by need vs 25% who think it should be targeted primarily to the Pacific.

2. Most New Zealanders (by quite a margin) think aid should be given solely for moral reasons – not in our own strategic interest.



  1. My pet peeve about aid surveys is that they usually don’t ask people how much ‘we’ actually spend on aid. This is important as according to a UK survey in 2004 most people massively overestimate aid expenditure, and when told the actual amount more think it should be increased than decreased.

    Comment by Jim — November 24, 2010 @ 9:44 pm

  2. Hi Jim,

    One of the US surveys I linked to also shows this. I need to check but don’t think the NZ survey asked it unfortunately, although on a range of other questions responses indicated the public didn’t know much about aid (didn’t know about NZ – thought we gave more in private donations than govt aid etc…)



    Comment by terence — November 25, 2010 @ 7:04 am

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