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Ethnic Minorities and Political Support: An Examination of Mass Attitudes in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Belarus, 1998 (ICPSR 3713)

Principal Investigator(s): Barrington, Lowell W., Marquette University; Silver, Brian D., Michigan State University


The objective of this collection was to study the attachment of minorities, especially ethnic Russians outside Russia, to their country of residence and assess their level of support for its institutions and leaders. The survey posed the following questions: If variation in loyalty and support exist within a given minority, what explains the variation at the individual level? Is political support by ethnic minorities a rational calculation or is it the result of subjective, identity-related factors? Respondents were asked a series of questions about their perceptions of nationality, their attitudes toward the independence of their nation, the current state of their country compared with its former existence as part of the Soviet Union, and their financial position and future prospects, as well as the economic condition of their nation and the development of market economies. Additional questions focused on the status of the political system in which they resided, including trust in government, the development of democracy, which groups of people were being served by the government, feelings about personal political rights and the rights of the Russian-speaking population, ties with Russia, relations with other countries in Europe, human rights, the status of Russian culture, and common interests with other nations in the world. Respondents also provided information on their national language, which foreign languages children should study in school, and the importance of the Russian language. In addition, there were a variety of questions about employment, workers' rights, medical care, income levels, free speech, interest in politics, trust in other people, participation in elections, life satisfaction, feelings about other nationalities, preferences for interactions with other nationalities at work and home, and attitudes toward emigration and provision of gifts to government officials. Demographic items include employment status, earnings, citizenship, sex, country of birth, level of education, marital status, household composition, and age.

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Study Description


Barrington, Lowell W., and Brian D. Silver. ETHNIC MINORITIES AND POLITICAL SUPPORT: AN EXAMINATION OF MASS ATTITUDES IN KAZAKHSTAN, KYRGYZSTAN, AND BELARUS, 1998. ICPSR version. Moscow, Russia: Russian Academy of Sciences. Institute of Sociology [producer], 1998. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributors], 2003. https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR03713.v1

Persistent URL: https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR03713.v1

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This study was funded by:

  • National Science Foundation (SBR-9710208)

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:    developing nations, ethnic groups, ethnic identity, freedom of speech, human rights, income, language, life satisfaction, market economy, medical care, minorities, national economy, national identity, political affiliation, political behavior, political participation, trust in government, workers

Smallest Geographic Unit:    administrative region

Geographic Coverage:    Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Soviet Union, Global

Time Period:   

  • 1998-04-12--1998-07-06

Date of Collection:   

  • 1998-04-12--1998-07-06

Unit of Observation:    Individuals

Universe:    The Russian-speaking minority population of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Belarus.

Data Type(s):    survey data

Data Collection Notes:

The codebook is provided by ICPSR as a Portable Document Format (PDF) file. The PDF file format was developed by Adobe Systems Incorporated and can be accessed using PDF reader software, such as the Adobe Acrobat Reader. Information on how to obtain a copy of the Acrobat Reader is provided on the ICPSR Web site.


Sample:    The sample design and methodology varied slightly among the three countries surveyed in this collection. In Kazakhstan and Belarus a probability sample was drawn beginning with primary sampling units (PSU). A few of the largest cities in both nations were also designated as "self-representing" areas and were included automatically in the sample. Stratification based on characteristics of the population of regions in these two nations was also used to increase the precision of the estimates. In Kyrgyzstan it was necessary to pre-select several oblasts (regions) to ensure variation in the concentration of Russian-speaking residents in the respondent's locality. The specific localities, areas within localities, and residences were still randomly selected. In the final selection stage in all three nations, Russian-speaking minorities were selected by excluding members of the titular nationality and non-Russian-speaking minorities (for example, Uzbeks in Kyrgyzstan who do not speak Russian).

Data Source:

personal interviews

Response Rates:    Kyrgyzstan: 75.9 percent, Kazakhstan: 60.6 percent, Belarus: 70.9 percent


Original ICPSR Release:   2003-08-27



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