A comprehensive new survey of more than 14,000 respondents across 11 countries—Australia, Canada, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the United States—highlights the major challenges of inflation and the rising cost of living for citizens all over the world.
Nearly 8 in 10 citizens across the 11 countries surveyed say they are worried about the impact of cost-of-living increases for people like them over the coming year. Inflation concerns are highest in Italy (88 percent), Germany (85 percent), and France (84 percent) and lowest but still elevated in Sweden (61 percent).
Roughly two-thirds to nearly 9 in 10 citizens in these countries agree that rising prices increase inequalities in their societies.
Overall, respondents attribute rising inflation and household costs mostly to supply chain disruptions, the Russian invasion of Ukraine, and greedy corporations and businesses. Importantly, respondents also believe that governments and central banks are most responsible for bringing down inflation: 84 percent and 79 percent of citizens, respectively, say these institutions have “a lot” or “a fair amount” of responsibility for lowering inflation, while only around one-quarter feel individuals should bear the responsibility for high costs.
In terms of solutions, respondents are a bit all over the map but want to see prices come down, along with a range of actions to ease the burden of household costs—paid for primarily by increased taxes on the wealthy.
Looking beyond the immediate inflation crisis, respondents react positively to a range of concrete proposals to help build a more successful economy where they live: 80 percent of citizens want to see “a good quality education system that provides skilled workers”; 70 percent support “government backed apprenticeship and training schemes”; and nearly two-thirds of citizens overall support “tax incentives or loans for businesses setting up in depressed areas.”
The multination survey was designed and written by core members of the Global Progress network and carried out online by YouGov in August and September 2022. Results are nationally representative for each of the 11 countries. Surveys were launched in both English and languages local to each country.
The full results broken out by country can be found here.
A full slide deck presentation of the major findings—produced by Matt Browne, Jon Will Chambers, Hans Anker, Marcus Roberts, and Amy Dacey for the Global Progress Summit in Toronto on September 16–17, 2022, hosted by the Center for American Progress and Canada 2020—can be seen here.