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FSD2822 EVA Survey on Finnish Values and Attitudes 2013

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Authors

  • Finnish Business and Policy Forum (EVA)

Keywords

European Union, European economic and monetary union, businesses, economic competition, economic growth, economic policy, environment, government policy, labour and employment, market economy, occupational life, public services, social and welfare policy, social change, social inequality, social justice, social reform, taxation, values

Abstract

The main themes of the survey were the competitiveness of Finnish enterprises, the state of the political system and how to achieve economic growth in Finland.

First, the respondents were asked to what extent they agreed with a number of statements relating to, for instance, political parties and the political system, science and technology, gender equality, environment, free competition, public services, Finnish business life and enterprises, measures to lessen the impact of the aging population, globalisation, Finland's NATO membership, market forces, national debt, immigrants, taxation, and the circumstances of employees, etc.

Opinions were charted on why the competitiveness of Finnish enterprises had declined. Causes mentioned included lack of innovation, high pay rises, social security contributions or taxes, lack of enthusiasm and determination, lack of government support, the euro, high wages of top managers, risk avoidance, bad working atmosphere, environmental regulations and strategic mistakes by management.

The respondents were also asked whether they would accept or object to a number of measures or structural changes aiming to stimulate economic growth. The measures mentioned included giving up conscription, reducing corporation tax, restricting the power of trade unions, increasing research funding, competitive tendering for the provision of public services, tighter rules for unemployment benefits, pay freeze, cutting public service expenditure, lowering income tax, increasing annual working hours, reducing study time, establishing new state-owned companies and increasing immigration. Opinions were charted on Finland's EU membership and the currency change to euro. The respondents were asked whether the economic independence of EU states should be restricted and whether they would vote for or against Finland's EU membership if a referendum were held at the time of the survey.

The background variables included the respondent's gender, year of birth, region of residence (NUTS3), basic and vocational education, economic activity and occupational status, industry of employment, which political party would vote for in parliamentary elections, membership in a trade union and self-perceived social class.

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