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Study shows little confidence in decision-makers at all levels

A new study shows low levels of trust in decision-makers from local to national and even EU levels. The survey results were released by the municipal development foundation KAKS on Sunday, as political parties in Finland prepare for upcoming local government elections.

Mini-täysistunto Euroopan parlamentissa 1. helmikuuta Brysselissä.
Just 18 percent of respondents said they trust EU decision-makers. Image: Stephanie Lecocq / EPA

The research findings released by the municipal development foundation KAKS on Sunday shows that just one in four respondents said they trust regional and national decision-makers. One in three said they trust municipal decision-makers to some extent or a great deal.

However the vast majority – some 60 percent – categorically said that they have little or no faith in their municipal decision-makers. Voters will next have a chance to register their feelings about local decision-makers during municipal elections due on April 9.

Centre Party backers content, Finns Party supporters widely mistrustful

When researchers drilled down into the findings to look at attitudes based on party affiliation, they found that supporters of Prime Minister Juha Sipilä’s Centre Party were most satisfied with their municipal decision-makers. However, on average they shared the same views as other respondents when it came to their feelings about EU leaders.

Supporters of the National Coalition Party led by Finance Minister Petteri Orpo however, were more likely than other party backers to trust decision-makers at all levels.

Meanwhile, people who identified as faithful to the Finns Party showed a significant level of mistrust for decision-makers on all levels. Backers of the party led by Foreign Minister Timo Soini had the same level of mistrust for national decision-makers as supporters of the opposition parties. Nearly 80 percent said that they had little or no faith in national leaders.

Little trust in EU leaders

Three out of four respondents said that they mistrusted EU decision-makers, with the majority admitting to little or no trust in them. Roughly one in five said that they trusted EU decision-makers somewhat or a great deal.

The study was conducted by the market research firm Kantar TNS for the Municipal Development Foundation. Researchers interviewed nearly 4,300 for the survey, which has a margin of error of +/- 1.5 percentage points.

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