German Election Panel Study, 1976 (ICPSR 34786)

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Forschungsgruppe Wahlen (Mannheim)

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This panel study was conducted in three waves: two preceding and one immediately following the German federal election in 1976. The design of the questionnaire and its wording attempted to assure continuity and comparability with the GERMAN ELECTION PANEL STUDY, 1972, especially in eliciting information on party preference, the evaluation of leading politicians, and opinions about important political issues. Of particular note is the measurement of attitudes toward the political parties: several different measures were used to tap the various dimensions of party preference. Respondents were asked to separately evaluate each party and leading politicians, including the candidates for the position of Chancellor, Helmut Kohl and Helmut Schmidt, on a feeling scalometer and to rank the parties in preference order. A central focus of all three waves was the respondents' self-placement of the political parties on several versions of the left-right ideological dimension. Another component of the election study dealt with the respondents' opinions toward important problems, including the salience of economic issues for the German population. Open-ended questions were asked concerning the respondents' views of the economic situation, the election campaigns, a new political party, the German democratic process, public officials, and law and order. In the post-election wave, respondents were asked about the most important tasks facing Germany and the party that could best deal with these tasks, the reasons for the electoral outcome for each party, and their political participation and voting decisions during the election campaign. Also probed were respondents' views of their financial situation, the efficacy of old age pensions, unemployment, nuclear power plants, and the political unification of Western Europe. Additional items queried respondents about their general political activities, voting behavior and intentions, and political party preference. Also explored were respondents' satisfaction with their life achievement, views of the future, abortion, and divorce, and their vacation plans. Demographic items specify date and place of birth, age, sex, education, marital status, social class identification, occupation, income, union membership, political party affiliation, and religious preference and church attendance.


These data are not available from ICPSR. Users should consult the data owners directly for details on obtaining the data and documentation.