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|Description||Public attitudes matter in democratic societies. They reflect what citizens believe, want, fear and prefer. They are difficult to measure, are often unexpressed, and cannot be inferred from electoral choices alone. Nor can they be gleaned from media opinion polls which tend to give momentary and incomplete glimpses of attitude formation and change. But long-term changes in the population’s attitude and value positions are as important to governance and social analysis as are shifts in a country’s (or a continent’s) demographic profile, economic outlook, behaviour patterns and cultural norms. Politicians, policy makers and academics all need to keep abreast of and understand such changes if they are to achieve a nuanced picture of their society. This is why the ESS exists. It is specifically designed to meet the exacting demands of academics, policy-makers and civil society alike for rigorous cross national data on social attitudes and behaviour. In its first decade the ESS has thus become a time-series of undisputed authority and utility. The ESS is fielded every two years in up to 34 countries. All EU Member States apart from Malta have participated in the ESS, as have eight other countries outside the EU (Croatia, Iceland, Israel, Norway, Russia, Switzerland, Turkey and Ukraine). The funding and governance arrangements, including the Statutes, of the ESS ERIC have now been agreed by all signatories and are available for scrutiny. They conform to Regulation No. 723/2009 (Community Legal Framework for a European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC)) so that the ESS ERIC - via its design, content, operational and dissemination activities - contribute to the attainment of the Europe 2020 policy goals. The level and nature of the ESS’s scientific collaboration will now be consolidated and enhanced as an ERIC. Free and immediate access to all its data and protocols will continue to be provided to an expanding set of users (over 40,000 by August 2011). Its scientific output will continue to increase from the present 500 substantive publications, together with many methodological publications and papers. Its face-to-face courses - already heavily oversubscribed by students and researchers - and its online courses will continue to be offered. Already an exemplar of a world class research infrastructure serving a large and growing international social science and policy community, ERIC status will enable the ESS to expand its visibility, services and reach still further, thus informing democratic and academic exchanges within and beyond Europe. ESS is a project on the ESFRI Roadmap of Research Infrastructures (RIs) of pan-European interest.|
|Status||Operational since 2002|
|Scientific Domains||Social Sciences and Humanities|
|RI Categorization||Research Archives|
|Location||St John Street, London, EC1R 0JD, United Kingdom|