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Citizens’ Pulse: Confidence in the future has declined

Government Communications Department
Publication date 20.10.2023 14.06 | Published in English on 23.10.2023 at 13.58
Press release

Citizens’ confidence in the future has gradually fallen over the course of the autumn and is now at its lowest in since spring 2020. A total of 72 per cent of respondents in the most recent survey said they were fairly confident about the future, compared with 80 per cent in June of this year.

Respondents’ views on the social themes the Government should prioritise remain almost unchanged. All in all 62 per cent of respondents highlighted well-functioning healthcare as one of the most important themes, high-quality education was highlighted by 36 per cent, and 35 per cent felt the Government should focus on sustainable public finances. Next on the list were reducing poverty and preventing social exclusion.

All age groups consider well-functioning healthcare a particularly important theme, and as many as 73 per cent of respondents aged 60 to 74 said it was among the most important. High-quality education was especially important to respondents aged 30 to 44. Sustainable public finances were highlighted most often in the responses of people aged 45 to 59 and 60 to 74. Challenges related to sustainable public finances are a significantly higher priority for men and respondents with high incomes than for women and low-income respondents.

“Citizens’ views on the most important themes for society are surprisingly consistent, as almost all groups of respondents want the Government to focus on solving challenges related to healthcare, education and public finances. That said, one of the most important priorities for respondents between the ages of 15 and 29 was promoting climate action, while reducing poverty was a high priority for low income earners,” says Juho Jyrkiäinen, Chief Specialist at the Prime Minister's Office.

Experiences of fairness in society and trust in institutions remain at a low level

Experiences of fairness in society showed a decline in the September survey and remained at a similar level in October. Around 64 per cent of the respondents consider society to be at least somewhat fair.

Trust in the institutions of society has also remained lower than in the early part of the year, although it is still relatively strong among most respondents. Over the course of this year, trust in the Government of Finland, Parliament, local government and political parties have seen the most significant declines. People with low incomes trust the institutions of society considerably less than other groups. The differences in the views of respondents with low and high incomes are clearest when it comes to trust in the Government, NATO, the European Union and healthcare.

The 49th round of the Citizens’ Pulse survey was conducted between 11 and 16 October 2023. The Citizens’ Pulse survey examines citizens’ opinions on current issues and government activities and asks about their mood and expectations for the future. Statistics Finland is responsible for collecting the survey data.

Inquiries: Juho Jyrkiäinen, Chief Specialist, Prime Minister’s Office, tel. +358 295 160 181