British Social Attitudes Survey, 1996 (ICPSR 3099)

Version Date: Jul 26, 2006 View help for published

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Social and Community Planning Research


Version V2

This survey is part of a continuing series designed to monitor trends in a wide range of social attitudes in Great Britain. The British Social Attitudes Survey (BSA) is similar to the General Social Survey carried out by the National Opinion Research Center (NORC) in the United States. The BSA questionnaire has two parts, one administered by an interviewer and the other completed by the respondent. As in the past, the 1996 interview questionnaire contained a number of "core" questions covering the major topic areas of defense, the economy, labor market participation, and the welfare state. The 1996 self-enumerated questionnaire was devoted to a series of questions on a range of social, economic, political, and moral issues. Topics covered (by section) are: (1) newspaper readership, (2) party identification, (3) housing, (4) electoral registration, politics, and political knowledge, (5) public spending, welfare benefits, and health care, (6) economic activity, labor market, and learning (including respondent's occupation), (7) scratchcards (the lottery), (8) social divisions, (9) political trust and Europe, (10) Northern Ireland, (11) taste and decency, (12) classification, (13) countryside, (14) transportation, (15) public understanding of science, (16) education, (17) local authority spending, (18) charitable giving, and (19) welfare/Social Security. An international initiative funded by the Nuffield Foundation, the International Social Survey Program (ISSP), also contributes a module to the BSA. The topic of the ISSP module in this collection was the role of government. Additional demographic data included age, education, income, marital status, and religious and political affiliations.

Social and Community Planning Research. British Social Attitudes Survey, 1996. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2006-07-26.

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1996-05 -- 1996-08
1996-04 -- 1996-08
(1) In 1999, Social and Community Planning Research (SCPR) became the National Centre for Social Research. (2) Under agreement with the UKDA, the data are disseminated as they were received, without additional processing by ICPSR. This agreement also provides that ICPSR will disseminate the data only for use within its member institutions. Persons from nonmember institutions may request these data directly from the UKDA. (3) The data are provided as an SPSS portable file. (4) The documentation was converted to Portable Document Format (PDF) by the UKDA and concatenated by ICPSR. The PDF documentation can also be downloaded from the UKDA Web site. (5) The formats for some variables in the SPSS portable file (e.g., NWATTECN) are not wide enough to accommodate the missing value specifications. For some procedures SPSS will display these missing values as asterisks. Users can widen the formats to display the actual missing value codes. (6) The documentation contains information for two different studies: British Social Attitudes, 1994, and Northern Ireland Social Attitudes, 1994. However, only the British Social Attitudes dataset is provided in this collection. (7) The British Social Attitudes Survey series began in 1983 and was conducted every year since, except in 1988 and 1992 when the core funding from the Sainsbury Family Charitable Trusts was devoted to conducting post-election studies of political attitudes and voting behavior in the British Election Study (BES) survey series.

Multistage stratified random sampling consisting of two stages of selection. Prior to 1993, the sample was taken from the electoral register, whereas this sample was drawn from the Postcode Address File which is a list of addresses (or postal delivery points) compiled by the Post Office.

All adults aged 17 or over living in Great Britain in private households.


2018-02-15 The citation of this study may have changed due to the new version control system that has been implemented. The previous citation was:
  • Social and Community Planning Research. BRITISH SOCIAL ATTITUDES SURVEY, 1996. ICPSR03099-v2. Brentwood, Essex, England: Social and Community Planning Research [producer], 1996. Colchester, Essex, England: UK Data Archive/Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributors], 2006-07-26.

2006-07-26 The data and documentation were resupplied by the United Kingdom Data Archive (UKDA). The data are now available as an SPSS portable file and the documentation has been converted to PDF by the UKDA.

Part 2 contains one weight variable named WEIGHT17.

Part 1 contains one weight variable named WTFACTOR.


  • Data in this collection are available only to users at ICPSR member institutions.

  • The citation of this study may have changed due to the new version control system that has been implemented. Please see version history for more details.