Statec published its findings of a European study about the confidence that individuals have in their institutions. The findings show that in Luxembourg, the level of confidence is well above the European average for the political system, the police and justice, but below average for social confidence. However, these numbers only show a single dimension of this complex study.
Focus on confidence in institutions
In Luxembourg, confidence in the political system, as well as confidence in the judiciary system are well above the European average, while the social (interpersonal) confidence score is less developed in Luxembourg than in the European average.
In absolute terms, the confidence score is highest for the police and lowest for the political system, in Luxembourg as in the EU-28. Indeed, Luxembourgers generally show a high confidence in their institutions (political system in general; police; justice).
For the political system, Luxembourg attains a score of 5.0 out of 10, and ranks largely above the European average (3.5) in 8th place. Confidence in the police can reach a score of 6.1 (EU-28: 6.0) in 14th place, and confidence in the justice system reaches a score of 5.3 (EU-28: 4.6), coming in 11th place.
These three scores mirror the fact, underlined by the 2015 Corruption Perception Index of Transparency International, that corruption in Luxembourg's public sector is percieved as having a relatively low impact. However, there is nothing to indicate whether the answers to the polling questions were being influenced or not by the partisan caracter which institutions such as the political parties or the government convey. Generally speaking, the lower the perception of corruption, the stronger the confidence in the institutions.
On the other hand, interpersonal confidence (social confidence) in Luxembourg is below the European average: 5.5 out of 10 for the Grand Duchy, compared to an EU-28 average of 5.8, which means the Luxembourg ranks 23rd among the 33 countries of Europe.
Interesting links to the level of education, salary and age
The Statec study evokes the image of a Luxembourg where the institutions benefit from a very high level of confidence, but where the confidence in other people is less developed than in other member states of the European Union. However, these numbers gain more amplitude when cross-referenced with age groups and education levels.
Indeed, the study shows that there is a close correlation between the level of education and the degree of confidence. Thus, if the degree of confidence in the political system is 4.6 for individuals with a lower level of education, this score evolves to 5.6 for those with a higher education degree. For the police (5.9 against 6.5) and justice system (4.9 against 6.1), the situation is identical.
The same evolution can be discovered if the degree of confidence is being analysed according to the salary. Thus the study shows that individuals from the highest income quintile generally have a higher degree of confidence than those of the other income quintiles.
With the exception of the justice system, older residents in Luxembourg tend to be more confident in institutions and also in other people than middle-aged individuals (35-49 years).
The findings are from the 2013 EU-SILC study.
(Sources: Statec's Regards N° 06/2016 and Regards N° 07/2016 publications)