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Afrobarometer Round 4: The Quality of Democracy and Governance in Kenya, 2008 (ICPSR 34001)

Principal Investigator(s): Mitullah, Winnie V., University of Nairobi. Institute for Development Studies; Oloo, Joseph, University of Nairobi. Institute for Development Studies; Onjala, Joseph, University of Nairobi. Institute for Development Studies; Kivuva, Joshua, University of Nairobi. Institute for Development Studies; Oyuke, Abel, University of Nairobi. Institute for Development Studies; Gyimah-Boadi, E., Ghana Center for Democratic Developement; Logan, Carolyn, Michigan State University; Bratton, Michael, Michigan State University; Mattes, Robert, University of Cape Town


The Afrobarometer project was designed to collect and disseminate information regarding Africans' views on democracy, governance, economic reform, civil society, and quality of life. This particular survey was concerned with the attitudes and opinions of the citizens of Kenya. Respondents in a face-to-face interview were asked to rate their president and the president's administration in overall performance, to state the most important issues facing their nation, and to evaluate the effectiveness of certain continental and international institutions. Opinions were gathered on the role of the government in improving the economy, whether corruption existed in local and national government, whether government officials were responsive to problems of the general population, and whether local government officials, the police, the courts, the overall criminal justice system, the National Electoral Commission, and the government broadcasting service could be trusted. Respondents were polled on their knowledge of the government, including the identification of government officials, their level of personal involvement in political, governmental, and community affairs, their participation in national elections, and the inclusiveness of the government. Economic questions addressed the past, present, and future of the country's and the respondents' economic conditions, and respondents' living conditions. In addition, opinions were sought on recent conflicts associated with political change within Kenya. Questions addressed the impact on the respondent of the violence that occurred following the December, 2007 general elections in Kenya. Background variables include age, gender, ethnicity, education, religious affiliation and participation, political party affiliation, language spoken most at home, whether the respondent was the head of household, current and past employment status, whether a close friend or relative had died from AIDS, and language used in the interview. In addition, the interviewer's gender, race, and education level is provided.

Series: Afrobarometer Survey Series

Access Notes

  • Data in this collection are available only to users at ICPSR member institutions. Please log in so we can determine if you are with a member institution and have access to these data files.


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Study Description


Mitullah, Winnie V., Joseph Oloo, Joseph Onjala, Joshua Kivuva, Abel Oyuke, E. Gyimah-Boadi, Carolyn Logan, Michael Bratton, and Robert Mattes. Afrobarometer Round 4: The Quality of Democracy and Governance in Kenya, 2008. ICPSR34001-v1. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2012-07-16. http://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR34001.v1

Persistent URL: http://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR34001.v1

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This study was funded by:

  • Danish International Development Agency
  • Canadian International Development Agency
  • Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency
  • United States Agency for International Development

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:    AIDS, community involvement, democracy, economic conditions, elections, government, government performance, HIV, information sources, living conditions, macroeconomics, markets, Members of Parliament, national interests, political attitudes, political change, political corruption, political participation, political systems, political violence, presidential performance, presidents, public confidence, public opinion, quality of life, social attitudes, standard of living, trust in government

Smallest Geographic Unit:    eumeration area

Geographic Coverage:    Africa, Global, Kenya, Sub-Saharan Africa

Time Period:   

  • 2008-10--2008-11

Date of Collection:   

  • 2008-10-29--2008-11-17

Unit of Observation:    individual

Universe:    Citizens of Kenya age 18 years or older, excluding institutions

Data Type(s):    survey data

Data Collection Notes:

Users may notice that the missing values designations are wider than the variable formats. This is due to optimization of the data. For those variables, there are no cases with those values.

The original data collection was carried out by the University of Nairobi Institute for Development Studies.

Additional information about the Afrobarometer Survey can be found at the Afrobarometer Web site.


Sample:    The Afrobarometer uses a clustered, stratified, multi-stage, probability sample design. The sample is designed as a representative cross-section of all citizens of voting age in a given country. The goal is to give every adult citizen an equal and known chance of selection for interview. This objective is reached by (a) strictly applying random selection methods at every stage of sampling and by (b) applying sampling with probability proportionate to population size wherever possible. A randomly selected sample of 1,200 cases allows inferences to national adult populations with a margin of sampling error of no more than plus or minus 3 percent with a confidence level of 95 percent. If the sample size is increased to 2,400, the confidence interval shrinks to plus or minus 2 percent.

Time Method:    Cross-sectional


Please visit the Afrobarometer Web site for more information regarding weights.

Mode of Data Collection:    face-to-face interview

Response Rates:    Approximately 66 percent.

Extent of Processing:   ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:

  • Created online analysis version with question text.
  • Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes.


Original ICPSR Release:   2012-07-16



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