Thursday, June 12, 2008

Survey reveals global perspectives

The Pew Research Center published the results of a survey conducted in twenty-four countries including Brazil, Mexico, and Argentina. Several media reports (i.e. this and this) have focused on how most respondents prefer Barack Obama over John McCain as the next president of the U.S. However, the poll also revealed several interesting perspectives from different regions such as Latin America. (An overview of the survey can be read here).

* China has been making serious inroads into Latin America’s economy and this was reflected by most respondents in the region. Still, an average of 76% of respondents feel that the U.S. continues to have lots of influence in the Americas.

* Like most of the world, a plurality of respondents in Latin America believed that the U.S. economy is hurting their national economies. Also, favorable views of the U.S. fell by 9% in Mexico. (It rose by 3% and 6% % in Brazil and Argentina, respectively).

* Majorities in 18 of the 24 countries surveyed describe current economic conditions in their country as bad. One of the countries where “good” ratings dropped the most was Argentina (23% “good” rating in 2008 vs. 46% in 2007).

* Do Latin Americans share the support for Obama that their vecinos in the U.S. have? The answer is yes, but by varying margins amongst those who are following the U.S. election in Brazil (23%) and Mexico (11%).

So what conclusions do you draw from the data?

Sources- Guardian UK, International Herald Tribune, Pew Research Center, AFP, Voice of America, Monsters & Critics, The Latin Americanist

Image- Mindbird Maps & Books

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