Afrobarometer Round 4: The Quality of Democracy and Governance in Liberia, 2008 (ICPSR 34002)

Version Date: Jul 19, 2012 View help for published

Principal Investigator(s): View help for Principal Investigator(s)
Alaric Tokpa, Subah-Belleh Associates (Liberia); Sumo Zeze, Subah-Belleh Associates (Liberia); Dan Saryee, Subah-Belleh Associates (Liberia); Leonard Greene, Subah-Belleh Associates (Liberia); James A. Thompson, Subah-Belleh Associates (Liberia); E. Gyimah-Boadi, Ghana Center for Democratic Development; Carolyn Logan, Michigan State University; Michael Bratton, Michigan State University; Robert Mattes, University of Cape Town


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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 Liberia. 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 regarding the Liberian Truth and Reconciliation Commission, the Special Court for Sierra Leone, community dispute resolution processes, and the Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration (DDR) program. Questions also addressed the personal impact of the two civil wars that occurred in Liberia between 1989 and 2003 on respondents as well as their involvement in the two wars. 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.

Tokpa, Alaric, Zeze, Sumo, Saryee, Dan, Greene, Leonard, Thompson, James A., Gyimah-Boadi, E., … Mattes, Robert. Afrobarometer Round 4: The Quality of Democracy and Governance in Liberia, 2008. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2012-07-19.

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United States Agency for International Development, Danish International Development Agency, Canadian International Development Agency, Department for International Development (United Kingdom), Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency

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Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research
2008-12 -- 2009-02
2008-12-09 -- 2009-02-08
  1. The original data collection was carried out by Subah-Belleh Associates, Liberia.

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


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.


Citizens of Liberia aged 18 years or older, excluding institutions.


Aproximately 99 percent.



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:
  • Tokpa, Alaric, Sumo Zeze, Dan Saryee, Leonard Greene, James A. Thompson, E. Gyimah-Boadi, Carolyn Logan, Michael Bratton, and Robert Mattes. Afrobarometer Round 4: The Quality of Democracy and Governance in Liberia, 2008. ICPSR34002-v1. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2012-07-19.

2012-07-19 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.

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



  • Curation and dissemination of this study is provided by the institutional members of ICPSR, and data is available only to users at ICPSR member institutions. To determine if you are at a member institution, check the list of ICPSR member institutions, or learn more about becoming a member.