Poll on Chancellor Scholz and his Governing Coalition’s First Year in Office

Germans are most worried about the Economy and Climate Change

The governing coalition of the Social Democrats, Greens, and Liberals have been in power for one year. The result: Germans are most worried about the state of the economy and climate change. Cooperation between the governing parties received poor scores.

The majority of Germans want the German Federal Government to focus on improving the economy as well as implementing the climate and energy transition. That is the result from a poll by the polling institute Civey, which was commissioned by the think-tank Das Progressive Zentrum. In response to the question of which topic the administration should most pursue in the coming years, 41.3 % answered “fight inflation.”  The second most important topic to the responders was “accelerate the climate and energy transition” (33,4 percent). “Strengthen the economy” was third on the list. Decreasing wealth inequality followed with 22.3%.

“Many people believe that the climate and energy transition is the most important topic for the following years. At the same time, a large part of the population is worried about the state of the economy. The poll shows the extent of the population’s worries about these topics and how important the success of a social-ecological transformation will be”, explained Dominic Schwickert, Executive Director of Das Progressive Zentrum.

Other topics that the German Federal Government should “strongly” pursue in the coming years from the perspective of the respondents are “the Modernization of Bureaucracy (17.5%), “Strengthening social cohesion” (14.5%), supporting Ukraine (13.2%) and “Complying with the debt limit law” (9.5%).

“This must be understood as an urgent task for the current administration”

About a quarter of the population trusts the current administration to accomplish their political goals long-term. They also believe that the administration can represent the country well in the world and that they are putting in the effort to renew the country. 26.3% percent of the respondents answered that the administration “also demonstrates volition for renewal, even during crisis”. 22.4% think that the administration represents Germany well internationally. And 20 percent believe that the administration will continue to  pursue its goals long term. 16.6 percent of the respondents answered that the administration has demonstrated  “good crisis management”.

From Germany’s population perspective, the most obvious deficit is the administration’s cooperation between the governing parties and external communication. Only 6.3 % of the respondents believe that the administration communicates well with the general public. 7.1% answered that the administration shows leadership strength and that they are able to cooperate well across party lines. The overwhelming majority, 59.4%, believe that none of the above statements reflect the administration.

“Many people trust the current administration to renew the country, to implement long-term projects, and to represent the country to the world, despite the difficult economic and political situation”, says Schwickert. “However since such a low percentage believe that the Social Democrats, Greens, and Liberals communicate well with the general public and that leadership strength and cooperation within the coalition is rated so poorly, these results must be understood as an urgent task for the administration”.

16.5% associate the administration with the “Zeitenwende”

When asked about which terms they would associate with the current German administration, the respondents mostly answered with “Zeitenwende”. 16.5 percent associate this term primarily with the coalition of the Social Democrats, Greens, and the Liberals. The following terms are “Transformation” (4.9 percent), “Progress” (4.3 percent), “Sustainability” (3.3 percent), “Respect” (2.6%), “Freedom” (1.8%). However, the absolute majority answered this question with that none of the terms above reflects the coalition (62.5%).

To commemorate the one year anniversary of the governing coalition agreement between the Social Democrats, the Greens, and the Liberals, Das Progressive Zentrum commissioned the polling research center Civey to carry out this poll. The polling period took place between Nov. 28th, 2022 and November 30th, 2022. 5,502 respondents answered the question on the most urgent goals for the administration, 5,507 answered the question on the most representative statement about the coalition, while 5,520 answered which term they most closely associated the administration with.

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