World Summit of Pollsters 2022 in Bratislava, Slovakia of the International Social Survey Programme (ISSP)

By César Morones.

In the beautiful city of Bratislava, capital of Slovakia, which is located on the banks of the Danube River, between Vienna Austria and Budapest Hungary, the 2022 Annual General Assembly of the International Social Survey Programme (ISSP) was held.

IMO-Mexico-ISSP has organized and hosted three Assemblies, Mexico City in 2005, Puerto Vallarta in 2011 and Guadalajara in 2018.

Founded in 1984 by the United States, Great Britain, Germany and Australia, the ISSP is an annual program that conducts a worldwide social interest survey in each of its member countries, which now includes 44 nations that have a voice and a vote.

Each of these 44 nations is represented by an institution that is responsible for conducting the survey in its own country.

The theme, objectives and questionnaire to be applied each year are common to all member nations in order to be able to make comparative analyses around the world.

The topics are multiannual, which means that they are replicated every 10 years approximately, in order to be able to make comparative analyses over time.

In the case of Mexico, the Institute of Marketing and Opinion #IMOMEXICO, directed by César Morones, has been in charge and responsible for conducting the Annual National Survey and, therefore, the only representative of our country in the ISSP since its origins.

In an Assembly like this one of 2022 in Bratislava Slovakia, the draft questionnaire was put to the consideration of the Plenary, which was planned and worked two years in advance, by a drafting commission, which is formed in a democratic way, among the member states and institutions that have the responsibility to finish the work, until it is approved in the Assembly, by majority vote.

On this occasion, the theme and questionnaire presented to the plenary was “National Identity & Citizenship” by the drafting committee, coordinated by the United States and its representative in the ISSP, the National Opinion Research Center (NORC) of the University of Chicago.

After its discussion, which lasted 3 days during the ordinary Assembly period, the theme and questionnaire to be applied in the 44 member countries in the coming year 2023 was voted in favor.

The first draft of the questionnaire on the topic “Digital Societies” was also presented and approved in general, with observations that will be taken into account by the respective drafting committee, to be discussed until its approval at the 2023 Assembly, whose survey will be applied in 2024.

In addition, the theme “Work Orientation” was approved and will be implemented in 2025.

Canada joined the ISSP at this Assembly as the 44th country member, whose representative is the University of Toronto.

The delegations of the Netherlands and Ecuador were invited to Bratislava as guest nations and will be considered for membership in the ISSP as of next year.

Regarding the venues of the next ISSP Assemblies, the 2023 Assembly will be held in Iceland, the 2024 Assembly will be held in Australia and the proposal of South Africa to hold the 2025 Assembly in the Kruger National Park was presented to the Plenary and approved by majority vote.
Due to the global pandemic, in 2021 the ISSP Assembly was held virtually and in 2022 (for the only time) it was hybrid, 30 nations participated in person, including Mexico, and 14 nations participated virtually. As of 2023, the modality will return to being only face-to-face.

It should be noted that Germany's 6-year term as ISSP Secretariat ended in 2021 and as of this 2022 Assembly, Switzerland is in charge of the Secretariat for a period of 3+3 years and in the history of the program, the first woman to be Secretary General is Stephanie Steinmetz, having presided brilliantly over the Bratislava Assembly.

As for the cultural and historical program of the Bratislava 2022 Assembly, our Slovak hosts were very generous in taking us participants first to the Bratislava Castle which is located on a hilltop a short distance from the city center.

Afterwards, we sailed in a beautiful boat up the Danube River to the Devin Castle, a strategic place that served as a military fort during the sieges that Bratislava suffered through the centuries, by the Celts, the Romans, the Byzantines, the Ottomans, until during the Napoleonic wars, it was Napoleon Bonaparte himself who, once the siege was over, blew it up to its ruins, so that it would not fall into enemy hands.

We were also delighted in a gala dinner by the gastronomy of Slovakia, which is magnificent to the palate and to the good taste.

After two years of pandemic, the ISSP family gathered again, looking forward to the Assemblies in Mexico in 2018 and India in 2019.

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