Survey "Ukrainians' perception of reforms during the full-scale war"
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Survey “Ukrainians’ perception of reforms during the full-scale war”

Photo: ua.depositphotos.com / rclassenlayouts
30 November 2022
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The survey has been conducted by the sociological agency InfoSapiens upon Vox Ukraine within the framework of the “Support of think tanks” project which is carried out by the International Renaissance Foundation with the financial support of the Embassy of Sweden in Ukraine.

The sample is representative of Ukraine’s adult population (over 18 years old) living in government-controlled territories, including those who left abroad after February 24, 2022. The sample’s structure is proportional to Ukraine’s population in terms of gender, age, and size of settlement and region based on State Statistics Service data as of January 1, 2022. The theoretical error does not exceed 2.2% for the total sample. Period: from October 12 to October 30, 2022

Which of the reforms implemented or underway are important

Ukrainians’ positive attitudes toward the importance of reforms mentioned in the survey outweigh the negative. In their opinion, the most important (i.e., “very important” and “rather important”) reforms are the digitalization of public services, army reform, decentralization, healthcare reform, and the creation of anti-corruption bodies. 

Importance of reforms for respondents (in %)

For example, more than two-thirds of respondents (68.4%) consider army reform very important, 18.1% believe it is rather important, and only 2.7% give it no importance whatsoever. Digitization of public services is very important for 61.5% of respondents, rather important for a quarter of respondents (26%), and completely unimportant for only 1.8%. Decentralization is very or rather important for 81% of Ukrainians, and healthcare reform for 80%. The creation of anti-corruption bodies was considered very important by over half (54.8%) of respondents, rather important by about a quarter (24.3%), and completely unimportant by 3.8%.

Ukrainians name judicial reform, land market implementation, and small privatization among the least important or those they have not heard of. In particular, judicial reform is very or rather important for every third respondent (30.4% and 32.5%, respectively), 13% attach no importance to it, and 13.9% think it is rather unimportant. Land reform is thought of as very and rather important by 26% and 39.7% of respondents, respectively, while 11.6% and 15.1% believe it is completely or rather unimportant. Small privatization is very important for 21% of Ukrainians, rather important for 38% of Ukrainians, and rather or not at all important for 24% of Ukrainians.

Gender aspect in attitudes toward reforms

Both men and women select the “very important” answer speaking about the army reform (considered to be very important by 67.4% of women and 69.6% of men), the digitalization of public services (very important for 66.5% of women and 55.3% of men) and the creation of anti-corruption bodies (very important for 57% of women and 52.1% of men). Women think educational reform is more critical than decentralization but give decentralization more importance over judicial reform. Men believe decentralization reform is more urgent, naming educational reform among the three least important.

Reforms in 2023

17.8% of Ukrainians find it challenging to name reforms that should be carried out in 2023. However, 13% of respondents believe it is vital to further enhance defense capability (13.6% of men and 12.9% of women chose this option). Healthcare reform ranked second in importance, selected by 10.6% of respondents (7% of men and 13.6% of women).

Reforms the respondents think should be implemented in 2023 (in %)

According to the survey, continuing to reform the environmental (0.4%), banking (0.4%), and energy (0.3%) spheres have the lowest importance.

Desired outcomes of the reform efforts

Respondents consider a reduction in corruption, an increase in Ukrainians’ well-being, and more efficient use of budget funds to be the reforms’ most important consequences. In the open part of the question (the answer “other” next to the proposed options), the respondents indicated “defense capability.”

For people aged 18 to 24, the most crucial reform outcomes are reduced corruption and more efficient use of budget funds. For respondents from age groups over 24, increasing the well-being of Ukrainians is more important than more effective use of budget funds.

What should be the most important reform outcome? (in %, respondents could choose up to three answers)

Nearly 40% of citizens are ready to withstand financial difficulties linked to the reform process for no more than a few months. Overall, every third respondent is unwilling to endure financial hardship during the reform process, and only 1% of respondents are prepared to hold out as long as it takes.

Willingness to withstand financial difficulties during the reform process (in %)

Regarding organizational difficulties of the reform process, most Ukrainians (48.4%) are ready to carry on through them for several months, and nearly a third (27.2%) are not prepared to endure them. This distribution remains virtually unchanged by gender or age.

The respondents’ willingness to tolerate the rawness of new rules (organizationaldifficulties) during the reform process (in %)

Obstacles on the path of reforms

The survey participants consider the opposition from those interested in preserving the current state of affairs to be the main obstacle to reforming the country (66.9% of respondents). Less than half (46.4%) of respondents think a lack of political will is the chief obstacle to reforms. Every third of those surveyed believe citizens’ inertia is an obstacle to reform (29.8%).

The main obstacles on the way to reforming Ukraine (in %, respondents could choose up to 3 answers)

Appendix. Survey results

Online survey results in tabular form.

Selected results

Rate the importance of the implemented reforms:

100% in the column Tax reform Educational reform Healthcare reform Digitization of public services Decentralization Creation of anti-corruption bodies Public procurement Army reform Land market Small privatization Judicial reform
Completely unimportant 3,4 4.3 6.8 1.8 4.4 6.2 5.0 2.7 11.6 8.1 13.0
Rather unimportant 7.2 8.1 7.5 3.3 8.7 6.2 8.4 3.7 15.1 14.9 13.9
Rather important 45.1 39.6 34.7 26.0 43.1 24.3 35.7 18.1 39.7 38.4 30.4
Very important 28.9 36.0 45.2 61.5 37.7 54.8 36.9 68.4 26.0 21.5 32.5
I have not heard of it 15.4 12.0 5.8 7.4 6.1 8.5 14.0 7.1 7.6 16.5 10.1

What reforms need to be carried out or continued in 2023*? (open question)

100% in the column Men Women
Defense capability 13.6 12.3
Healthcare 7.0 13.6
Judiciary  12.5 7.3
Anti-corruption reform 8.6 7.4
Education 6.9 13.1
Banking 0.7 0.1
Energy 0.3 0.3
Language 0.9 1.0
Retirement 6.3 9.7
Digitization 0.7 0.3
Decentralization 0.1 1.7
Economy 0.7 0.8
Taxation 4.2 4.8
Finance 0.4 0.8
Ecology 0.0 0.7
Land 1.3 1.6
Social sphere 1.4 3.5
State power organs/Verkhovna Rada 7.0 5.2
Housing  0.6 0.8
Customs 0.4 1.5
Labor/jobs 0.8 1.4
Increasing salaries/living wage/pensions 4.8 4.4
Business support 0.6 0.5
Ending the war 4.6 4.4
Police 2.0 1.3
The country’s reconstruction program 1.3 1.5
Reducing prices for products/utilities 1.1 0.5
All are needed 2.9 6.6
No reforms are needed 1.6 0.4
Other 12.6 8,9
Hard to say/Refusal 19.4 16.4

*we cite respondents’ responses to this open-ended question in full, understanding that, e.g., raising wages is not a reform. Nevertheless, it can be considered a reflection of Ukrainian’s wishes.

100% in the column 18-24 years old 25-34 years old 35-44 years old 45-55 years old 55+ years old
Defensive capability 8.0 11.4 12.7 14.9 13.8
Healthcare 6.6 8.8 11.0 11.2 11.8
Judiciary 2.8 4.6 7.9 9.4 14.5
Anti-corruption reform 3.1 5.8 9.4 7.4 9.5
Education 8,9 13.6 11.2 6,7 10.4
Banking 0.2 1.1 0.6 0.3 0.0
Energy 0.4 1.0 0.2 0.4 0.0
Language 2.5 0.5 1,2 1.0 0.7
Retirement 1.1 2.6 5.4 8.3 13.8
Digitization 0.8 1.1 0.3 0.4 0.3
Decentralization 0.0 0.3 0.2 0.4 2,2
Economy 1.5 0.7 1.1 0.8 0.4
Taxation 1,2 2.7 6.5 4.6 4.9
Finance 0.0 0.1 0.4 1.1 0.9
Ecology 0.1 0.4 0.2 0.4 0.6
Land 0.1 1.5 3.0 2.4 0.5
Social sphere 4.1 7.1 3.5 1,2 0.3
State power organs/Verkhovna Rada 3.6 5.4 4.9 9.7 5.8
Housing  0.0 0.6 2.1 0.3 0.3
Customs 0.1 0.2 0.6 0.0 2,2
Labor/jobs 1.0 1.4 1.1 2.4 0.4
Increasing salaries/living wage/pensions 8.8 9.1 5.9 3.3 1.4
Business support 0.0 1.6 0.6 0.8 0.0
Ending the war 3.5 2.1 4.7 1.8 6.9
Police 3.2 ,3 1.7 1,2 1.9
The country’s reconstruction program 3.9 1.4 1.6 0.3 1.3
Reducing prices for products/utilities 2,3 2.5 0.3 0.2 0.2
All are needed 0.8 3.3 4.3 6,7 6.1
No reforms are needed 2.1 1.0 1.0 0.4 0.8
Other 16.1 11.8 11.6 10.2 8.3
Hard to say/Refusal 27.7 19.0 16.1 17.0 16.3

 

100% in the column Kyiv North West Center South East
Defensive capability 14.2 12.7 12.5 14.1 10.6 13.4
Healthcare 12.1 9.9 11.6 9.7 10.5 10.6
Judiciary 16.2 5.3 11.3 7.5 8.4 13.0
Anti-corruption reform 13.7 8.3 6.1 10.7 6.6 4.0
Education 6.6 9.8 12.9 9.2 10.6 10.3
Banking 0.2 1.5 0.1 0.4 0.2 0.2
Energy 0.5 0.9 0.0 0.4 0.2 0.1
Language 2.1 0.4 0.8 1.5 0.6 0.7
Retirement 6.9 4.5 4.4 16.9 8.0 3.3
Digitization 0.9 0.3 0.4 0.1 1.1 0.5
Decentralization 0.3 0.0 0.1 0.1 0.5 6.2
Economy 2,2 1.1 0.3 0.3 1.1 0.6
Taxation 6.0 2.1 4.4 2.4 5,6 8.8
Finance 0.2 1.0 0.2 0.2 2,3 0.0
Ecology 0.0 0.0 0.0 1.4 0.2 0.1
Land 0.6 0.8 3.3 0.4 2.1 0.4
Social sphere 1.1 4.6 3.9 1.6 1.7 2.0
State power organs/Verkhovna Rada 5.5 8.0 6.8 3.6 7.5 5.5
Housing 0.6 2.1 0.1 0.0 1.1 1.1
Customs 0.0 0.3 0.3 0.2 0.0 6.1
Labor/jobs 0.6 2.9 0.2 1.1 0.6 2,2
Increasing salaries/living wage/pensions 1.3 3.8 4.5 5,6 6.5 2.7
Business support 0.5 0.6 0.6 0.6 0.3 0.5
Ending the war 3.8 7,8 2.7 2.4 4.4 8.7
Police 0.3 5.8 2,2 0.8 0.3 0.1
The country’s reconstruction program 2.1 1.3 2.4 1.7 0.1 0.6
Reducing prices for products/utilities 1.5 0.9 0.9 1.0 0.1 0.6
All are needed 6.0 3.5 3.7 5.9 2.9 8.4
No reforms are needed 0.2 0.1 0.4 1,2 0.6 3.1
Other 12.4 12.5 6.8 10.4 10.3 14.9
Hard to say/refusal 15.0 16.8 18.6 16.5 20.4 18.2

What should be the most important reform outcome?

Reducing corruption 74.4%
More efficient use of funds 39.1%
Citizens’ greater ability to influence government decisions  34.1%
Increasing Ukrainians’ welfare  61.5%
Increasing Ukrainians’ satisfaction  18.0%
Increasing Ukrainians’ life expectancy  15.6%
Ukraine’s GDP growth 31.0%
Your option: specify 0.5%
Your option: increasing defense capability 0.3%

Name the main obstacles on the way to reforming Ukraine

Opposition from those interested in preserving the current state of affairs 64.4%
Lack of political will 51.9%
Lack of funds 42.3%
Lack of knowledge 34.4%
Citizens’ Inertia  29.4%
Other: corruption 3.2%
Your option: specify 3.2%
other: war 1.4%

Usually, difficulties and inconveniences arise from the reform process until the new processes completely replace the old ones. How long will you withstand financial hardship during the reform process?

Not ready to withstand 30.0%
Ready to withstand for several months 37.7%
Ready to withstand for several years 23.7%
Your option: specify 5.9%
Other: ready to withstand as long as it takes 1.1%

Usually, difficulties and inconveniences arise from the reform process until the new processes completely replace the old ones. How long will you tolerate the rawness of new rules (“organizational” difficulties) during the reform process?

Not ready to withstand  27.2%
Ready to withstand for several months 48.4%
Ready to withstand for several years 19.3%
Your option: specify 3.4%
Other: ready to withstand as long as it takes 0.3%
Other: hard to say 1.4%

 

Attention

Автори не є співробітниками, не консультують, не володіють акціями та не отримують фінансування від жодної компанії чи організації, яка б мала користь від цієї статті, а також жодним чином з ними не пов’язаний