NewsBreaks often covers recent surveys and reports from Pew Research Center, “a nonpartisan fact tank that informs the public about the issues, attitudes and trends shaping the world.” Its website has 12 main topic sections, each showcasing the latest research, which is collected in reports, fact sheets, or other formats that extrapolate respondents’ answers to cover the entire U.S. (or other) population. There is a summary page that includes the methodology for how the information was collected and a link to download and read the full report.
The following are some of the latest reports from 2022 and 2023. Not every topic section is represented; some reports overlap topics.
Here are NewsBreaks’ other roundups of Pew Research Center’s research: October 2017 | March 2018 | October 2018 | March 2019 | October 2019 | March 2020 | December 2020 | June 2021 | December 2021 | July 2022 | September 2023
Politics & Policy
The Feb. 6, 2023, report, “Economy Remains the Public’s Top Policy Priority; COVID-19 Concerns Decline Again,” finds that while strengthening the economy is still the public’s first priority for the president and Congress to tackle (75% call it a top priority), people say it’s more important than before to reduce the budget deficit (57% this year versus 45% last year) and less important to deal with COVID-19 (26% this year versus 60% in 2022). Other top priorities named in this survey include reducing healthcare costs, defending the U.S. from terrorism, decreasing crime, and improving education.
“The Changing Face of Congress in 8 Charts,” from Feb. 7, 2023, represents how the 118th Congress has reached a variety of demographic milestones, although it is still out of alignment with the makeup of the broader U.S. population. The charts showcase the following facts about the current Congress:
- The 118th Congress is the most racially and ethnically diverse in history.
- The number of women in Congress is at an all-time high.
- Thirteen voting members of Congress identify as lesbian, gay or bisexual—the highest number in history.
- The share of Millennials and Gen Xers in Congress has grown slightly in recent years.
- The share of immigrants in Congress has ticked up but remains well below historical highs.
- Far fewer members of Congress now have personal military experience than in the past.
- Nearly all lawmakers in Congress have a college degree.
- Christians remain the largest religious group in Congress, but their ranks have declined slightly over time.
On Feb. 15, 2023, the analysis, “More Americans See Bipartisan Common Ground on Foreign Policy Than on Abortion, Other Issues,” looked at the issues that Republicans and Democrats most disagree and least disagree on. On issues of foreign policy, 44% say there is “some” common ground between the parties, and 10% say there is none. On abortion, 27% say there is “at least some” overlap of Republican and Democrat opinions; 35% say there is none. These public perceptions have been basically the same since the last time Pew Research Center did this survey, in fall 2016.
“What Public Opinion Surveys Found in the First Year of the War in Ukraine,” from Feb. 23, 2023, is a look back at previous surveys about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The following seven themes emerged:
- International public opinion of President Vladimir Putin and Russia turned much more negative following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
- International opinions of NATO turned more positive in several countries after the war began.
- After Russia invaded Ukraine, there was a sharp increase in the share of U.S. adults viewing Russia as an enemy of the United States.
- In a survey conducted around a month after the invasion, 72% of Americans said they had at least some confidence in Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to do the right thing in world affairs, while just 6% said the same about Putin.
- Between March 2022 and January 2023, there was a decline in the share of Americans— especially Republicans—viewing the war as a major threat to U.S. interests.
- Four-in-ten Republicans in the U.S. said in January 2023 that the country is providing too much aid to Ukraine, up from 9% who said so early in the war.
- As of January 2023, Americans were more likely to approve than disapprove of the Biden administration’s response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, but attitudes varied widely by party.
The report from Dec. 6, 2022, “Social Media Seen as Mostly Good for Democracy Across Many Nations, But U.S. is a Major Outlier,” shares findings from a survey of 19 advanced economies. A median of 57% say social media has been good for their democracy, but the U.S. is an outlier, with 34% of U.S. adults saying it has been good for it. Majorities do think social media facilitates the spread of misinformation and disinformation: A median of 84% say the internet and social media usage make people easier to manipulate with false information and rumors, and a median of 70% think the spread of false information is a major threat.
On Dec. 22, 2022, “Far More Americans See U.S. Influence on the World Stage Getting Weaker Than Stronger” explored how U.S. adults feel about their country’s global influence, with 47% saying it is getting weaker. Only 32% say its influence is the same as in recent years. This is mostly a feeling for Republicans and Republican-leaners: 63% say it’s getting weaker, compared to 37% of Democrats and Democrat-leaners.
“Many Countries in Europe Get a New Government at Least Every Two Years,” from Jan. 25, 2023, is a collaboration with ParlGov to see what the median length of government in the European Union member states and the U.K. has been from the end of World War II to the end of 2022. Typically, the government leadership changes at least once every 2 years, although governments in Belgium, Finland, and Italy have had a median length of fewer than 365 days. Luxembourg has the longest median government length, at more than 4 1/2 years.
Immigration & Migration
The Dec. 16, 2022, report, “Key Facts About Recent Trends in Global Migration,” shares the following eight facts from United Nations data, among other sources:
- Europe and Asia have the most international migrants.
- The United States has more international migrants than any other country.
- India remains the top origin country for the world’s migrants.
- Remittances—the money that migrants send to their home countries—decreased by about $11 billion from 2019 to 2020 as the coronavirus pandemic arrived.
- India has been the world’s top receiver of remittances since 2010.
- The number of displaced people [i.e., those forced to migrate due to circumstances such as violence or natural disasters] in the world rose to a new high of 89.4 million in 2020.
- The share of international migrants who are men has ticked up in recent decades.
- A majority of the world’s international migrants lived within their region of origin in 2020.
The report from Dec. 19, 2022, “In Their Own Words: Asian Immigrants’ Experiences Navigating Language Barriers in the United States,” is a record of 49 focus groups conducted with Asian Americans throughout 2021 about the challenges they faced after arriving in the U.S. A majority of Asian immigrants arrived in the U.S. more than 10 years ago, and 54% of Asian Americans were born outside the U.S. The focus group participants cited speaking English as a daily challenge, including getting medical care, finding employment, and accessing government services.
The Jan. 13, 2023, report, “Monthly Encounters With Migrants at U.S.-Mexico Border Remain Near Record Highs,” notes that monthly encounters between U.S. Border Patrol agents and migrants attempting to enter the U.S. are at levels not seen in 2 decades. In November 2022 (the latest available data), 206,239 encounters were reported by U.S. Customs and Border Protection. That total exceeds the peak that had been reached in May 2019 and is about the same as the previous peak from March 2000.
Race & Ethnicity
For Black History Month, the Feb. 10, 2023 report, “Key Facts About the Nation’s 47.2 Million Black Americans,” shared the following seven statistics:
- The Black population in the U.S. has grown by 30% since 2000, rising from 36.2 million then to 47.2 million in 2021.
- The arrival of new immigrants from Africa, the Caribbean and elsewhere has been an important contributor to Black population growth.
- More than half of the nation’s Black population (56%) lived in Southern states in 2021, up from a historic low of 52% in 1970.
- With 4 million Black residents, Texas is the state with the largest Black population.
- New York has more Black residents than any other metropolitan area.
- The Black population of the U.S. is relatively young.
- Educational attainment among Black Americans is on the rise.
“Black Americans Firmly Support Gender Equality but Are Split on Transgender and Nonbinary Issues,” from Feb. 16, 2023, shows that 62% of non-Hispanic Black adults say Black people should prioritize fighting against racism over other inequalities. Another survey shows that 79% of non-Hispanic Black adults say women should have equal rights with men, and 76% say the feminist movement has helped “a great deal or a fair amount” in advancing women’s rights. However, only 49% say feminism has actually aided Black women, and 68% find feminism empowering.
On Feb. 21, 2023, Pew Research Center published “A Look at Black-Owned Businesses in the U.S.” It finds that 58% of Black adults think supporting Black-owned businesses is “extremely or very effective” in moving Black people toward equality in the U.S. In 2020, there were more than 140,000 U.S. firms with majority Black or African American ownership, up 14% from 2017. But Black-owned businesses contributed only 1% of gross revenue from U.S. firms classifiable by race. (A business is considered majority Black-owned if a Black owner has at least 51% equity in it.) White-owned businesses contributed 93% of all revenue from classifiable companies.
“45% of Americans Say U.S. Should Be a ‘Christian Nation’” from Oct. 27, 2022, explores the rise of “Christian nationalism,” which is centered on the idea that the U.S. founders actually didn’t want a separation of church and state. Many Christian leaders have spoken out against Christian nationalism, but 60% of U.S. adults believe the country’s founders “originally intended” the nation to be Christian. (Pew Research Center notes that some people define a Christian nation as a country guided by Christian values, regardless of religion.) Meanwhile, 45% say the U.S. “should be” a Christian nation. Majorities are hesitant about religion being involved with government, though: 77% say houses of worship should not endorse political candidates, and 67% say religious institutions should stay out of political matters.
“About Four-in-Ten U.S. Adults Believe Humanity is ‘Living in the End Times’” is the Dec. 8, 2022, report, which notes that living in periods of anxiety (such as during the coronavirus pandemic) have historically led people to believe the destruction of the world as we know it is imminent. Here’s how it breaks down in the U.S.: 39% of adults think “we are living in the end times,” and 58% think we are not; while 49% of Christians think we are not; 70% of Catholics think we are not; and 65% of mainline Protestants think we are not. Also, 29% of those from non-Christian religions and 23% of those with no religious affiliation say we are.
The Jan. 27, 2023, report, “Religiously Unaffiliated People Face Harassment in a Growing Number of Countries,” studies how atheists, agnostics, and people who don’t identify with any religion (who make up 16% of the global population) have been harassed in 2020 by governments, private groups, or both in 27 countries, up from 22 in 2019. Pew Research Center first began tracking this information in 2012, when there were only three countries where the religiously unaffiliated faced harassment. Harassment includes verbal abuse, physical violence, and killings. In 2020, 19 governments perpetrated harassment, including those of Egypt, Croatia, and Pakistan. Nongovernmental, social harassment occurred in 13 countries, including Lebanon and the Maldives. Both governmental and social harassment occurred in Tunisia.
Generations & Age
The July 20, 2022, report, “Young Adults in U.S. Are Much More Likely Than 50 Years Ago to Be Living in a Multigenerational Household,” shows that as of 2021, 25% of U.S. adults ages 25–34 lived in a multigenerational household, up from 9% in 1971. Those without a college degree are more likely to live with other generations of adults—31% of adults who had not finished college versus 16% of adults who had earned at least a bachelor’s degree.
“Large Shares in Many Countries Are Pessimistic About the Next Generation’s Financial Future,” from Aug. 11, 2022, surveyed people in 19 countries, and a median of 70% of adults believe children in their country will be worse off financially than their parents. In Japan, France, Italy, and Canada, 75% say children will be worse off. Majorities in Spain, the U.K., Australia, the U.S., Belgium, Greece, the Netherlands, and South Korea say the same; 42% say so in Poland. In Singapore, 56% believe that the next generation will actually be better off financially than their parents.
Gender & LGBTQ
On Sept. 29, 2022, Pew Research Center took stock of the MeToo movement against sexual harassment and assault, which was founded by activist Tarana Burke, who first used the term in 2006; it gained widespread popularity starting in 2017. “More Than Twice as Many Americans Support Than Oppose the #MeToo Movement” states that about half of Americans support MeToo, and 21% oppose it. Democrats are about three times as likely as Republicans to support the movement. People are experiencing change—70% say people who commit sexual harassment or assault are more likely to be held accountable for their actions, and about 60% say people who report harassment or assault at work are more likely to be believed than before.
“Parents Differ Sharply by Party Over What Their K-12 Children Should Learn in School,” from Oct. 26, 2022, listed its key findings, including the following:
- Upper-income parents and parents answering about a child in private school express higher levels of satisfaction with the quality of their children’s education.
- One-in-five parents of K-12 students say their children’s school doesn’t spend enough time on core academic subjects like reading, math, science and social studies.
- About two-thirds of parents say it is extremely or very important to them that their children’s school teaches them to develop social and emotional skills.
- Parents of K-12 students have mixed views about whether public school teachers should be allowed to lead students in prayer.
In time for Valentine’s Day, the Feb. 2, 2023, report, “From Looking for Love to Swiping the Field: Online Dating in the U.S.,” highlighted the prevalence of internet dating: 30% of U.S. adults have used a dating site or app, with Pew Research Center calling their experiences a “range from triumphant to troubling.” Tinder is the most popular platform, with 46% of all internet dating users having tried it (i.e., 14% of all U.S. adults). The next most popular are Match and Bumble, with 30% of users, and then OkCupid, eharmony, and Hinge, which have each been tried by about 20% of users. As for LGBTQ+ internet dating users, 34% have gone on Grindr, and 10% have used HER. How successful are these platforms? Of those adults who are married, living with a partner, or in a committed romantic relationship, 10% met online; for those younger than 30, 20% of romantically partnered adults met online; and 25% of partnered LGBTQ+ adults met online.
Family & Relationships
On Dec. 7, 2022, “One-in-Four U.S. Parents Say They’ve Struggled to Afford Food or Housing in the Past Year” showed that 25% of U.S. parents had experienced times in the past year when they could not afford food or pay their rent or mortgage. In addition, 24% had trouble paying for healthcare, and 20% couldn’t always afford child care. These issues don’t only affect lower-income parents—17% of middle-income parents faced the challenges of paying for food and housing, and 5% of upper-income parents struggled to pay for food (and 4% had issues paying for housing). When it comes to family medical care, 37% of lower-income parents have struggled, 21% of middle-income parents have, and 6% of upper-income parents have. Child care payment struggles were faced by 38% of lower-income parents, 16% of middle-income parents, and 4% of upper-income parents.
“K-12 Parents Differ by Party in How Frequently They Discuss Certain National Issues With Their Children,” from Dec. 13, 2022, finds a partisan divide in how often parents engage their children (ages K–12) in conversations about topics at the center of national debates. Racism and racial inequality come up “very or fairly often” for 25% of parents, the environment or climate change for 18%, sexual orientation or gender identity also for 18%, and guns or gun policy come up “at least fairly often” for 15%. Democrats and Democrat-leaners are more likely than Republicans and Republican-leaners to say these topics come up “very or fairly often”: 34% versus 15% for racism and racial inequality, 28% versus 9% for the environment or climate change, 22% versus 13% for sexual orientation or gender identity, and 18% versus 13% for guns or gun policy.
The Jan. 24, 2023, report, “Parenting in America Today,” studies parents of children younger than 18. They are most worried about their children struggling with anxiety and depression (with 40% saying they’re “extremely or very worried”) and bullying (35% are “similarly concerned”). Other worries include children’s physical safety, keeping them from drugs, and preventing teen pregnancy. Mothers are more likely than fathers to have these worries, and Hispanic parents and lower-income parents are more likely than other parents to be concerned about the other worries listed. Black and Hispanic parents are more likely than white and Asian parents to be “extremely or very worried” about children getting shot or picked up by police. The report also looks at the goals parents have for their children (financial independence and career satisfaction are priorities) and how difficult parenting is (62% say it is harder than they expected).
Internet & Technology
“Public Awareness of Artificial Intelligence in Everyday Activities” is the Feb. 15, 2023, report. It tests awareness of AI in everyday scenarios, with only 30% of U.S. adults able to correctly identify all six uses of AI they were asked about in the survey. AI is being used several times a day for 27% of people; 28% say they interact with AI about once a day or a few times a week. And 46% of people are feeling an equal mix of concern and excitement when it comes to the increasing spread of AI, while 15% are more excited than concerned, and 38% are more concerned than excited. The six uses of AI in the survey included wearable fitness trackers analyzing exercise and sleep patterns (68% correctly guessed that they use AI), online shopping (with 64% correctly guessing that custom product recommendations use AI), and email (51% knew that email services categorizing messages as spam use AI).
On Feb. 22, 2023, Pew Research Center also focused on AI, in “How Americans View Emerging Uses of Artificial Intelligence, Including Programs to Generate Text or Art.” The report showcases public views on AI applications for a variety of fields that are in use or are in the late stages of development. For ChatGPT, 45% say it is not an advance for news media. For DALL-E 2 or Midjourney, 31% say these are major advances for the visual arts. For DeepMind’s AlphaFold, which could help speed up the development of medical treatments, 59% see it as a major advance. As for applications of AI in agriculture and weather prediction, 54% say these are a major advance for producing drought- and heat-resistant crops.