Dataset: Election Study 1998 (Politbarometer)


Cumulated dataset of the Politbarometers for 1998. Judgement on parties and politicians before and after the Federal Parliament election. Attitude to current political questions.

1. The following topics were posed identically at every survey time: most important political problems of the Federal Republic; intent to participate in the next Federal Parliament election; behavior at the polls in the last Federal Parliament election; sympathy scale for the SPD, CDU, CSU, FDP, the Greens and the PDS; party preference according to the rank order procedure; sympathy scale for Helmut Kohl, Oskar Lafontaine, Wolfgang Schaeuble and Gerhard Schroeder; judgement on the economic situation of the country and one's own economic situation; expected economic situation for the country; self-assessment on a left-right continuum.
2. In at least one or more survey months the following questions were posed: party preference (Sunday question, first vote and second vote); certainty of one's voting decision; other voting decision given knowledge about election result; satisfaction with election result; coalition preference; attitude to a grand coalition; expected conduct of the SPD if a red-green majority is prevented; attitude to a clear coalition statement by the SPD before the election; assessment of the Greens as reliable coalition partner for the SPD; sympathy scale for the government, the small or the large partner in the government as well as the small and large partner of the opposition; naming the five most important political personalities in the Federal Republic; sympathy scale for the most important top politicians in the Federal Republic as well as for Willy Brandt and Franz-Josef Strauss; judgement on the coalition loyalty of the FDP as well as the CDU; time for a change of government; preference for federal chancellor; comparison of the credibility, energy, sympathy, responsibility, honesty, the winner type and problem-solving ability of the chancellor candidates of the CDU and the SPD; preferred chancellor candidate of the CDU as well as of the SPD; general satisfaction with democracy; interest in politics; the right people in leading positions; satisfaction with the condition of society in comparison with Western Europe; issue-ability of the parties in the areas of business, job creation, fight against crime, securing pensions and currency stability; perceived danger as well as military threat to Germany from the current political problems in Russia; attitude to bugging private areas to combat crime; attitude to the withdrawal of the Catholic Church from pregnancy counseling; the one responsible for the failure of the planned tax reform; expected disadvantages for economic development from the failure of tax reform; attitude to the decision to increase the sales tax to 16% to finance securing pensions; perceived threat from crime; attitude to elimination of identity checks at borders within the EU; feared influx of applicants for asylum through elimination of border checks; influx of foreigners as cultural enrichment or danger of foreign infiltration; most able party in foreign policy; preference for restraint or increased international effort of Germany for human rights; advantageousness of membership of Germany in the EU and expected advantageousness of an eastern expansion of the EU; preference for orientation of wage negotiations on the rate of inflation; attitude to a strike by the OETV to achieve the wage demands; attitude to the demand of the Greens to increase the price of gasoline to 5 DM; attitude to reduction of the highest tax rate for income; attitude to the government program to increase the petroleum tax as of January 1999; expectations of the planned tax reform; assessment of the influence of Schroeder and Lafontaine on the new Federal Government; expected reduction of unemployment in Germany; attitude to dual citizenship; attitude to participation in the government in Mecklenburg-West Pomerania by the PDS; expected influence of the EU on decisions in Germany; attitude to a common currency in Europe; personally expected advantages or disadvantages from the European currency; advantageousness of the new currency for Germany; expected influence of the Euro on unemployment, the influence of Germany in Europe, the cost of living and the safety of savings; expected introduction of the Euro and on schedule; importance of the topic Euro for respondent; attitude to an official reward for tips on tax evasion; judgement on the job of the Federal Government; better government from the SPD; winner of the Federal Parliament election already certain; assumed election winner; desire for CDU/CSU and FDP in the government; expectation that the FDP, the Greens, the Republicans and the DVU will take seats in Federal Parliament; DVU voters in Saxony-Anhalt as protest voters; FDP has become unnecessary; effects of composition of government on respondent; knowledge about the significance of the second vote; attitude to the 5%-ruling; attitude to the exception to the 5%-ruling given three direct mandates; attitude to air attacks against Irak given further obstruction of UN inspections; attitude to further construction of nuclear power plants and to quickly taking already existing nuclear power plants out of service; assessment of the break of the PDS with the SED past; judgement on cooperation of the other parties with the PDS; judgement on the accusation of the CDU in view of cooperation of SPD and PDS; judgement on the introduction of the DM by the western Allies only in the western part of Germany; Ludwig Ehrhard or the USA as father of the DM; judgement on the term "economic miracle"; most important cause for the economic upturn after the Second World War; assumptions about the existence of an economic miracle in the GDR; most important soccer world championship for the Germans (1954, 1974 or 1990); soccer world championship 1954 or economic miracle as most important basis for a new self-consciousness of the Germans; the one primarily guilty for the First World War; avoidability of the First World War; Germany mature for democracy after the First World War; Treaty of Versailles as reason for Hitler's seizure of power; shortening of the war from bombing of the civilian population in the Second World War by the Western Allies; bombing of Dresden as war crime; primary actor in the division of Germany; possibility of German reunification after the war in spite of East-West tensions; assessment of the possibility of preventing Hitler's seizure of power and the Second World War; assumption about agreement of most Germans with the attack on Poland 1939; the significance of the Hitler-Stalin Pact for the attack on Poland; attack on the Soviet Union 1941 in order to beat a Soviet attack; judgement on Hitler's order not to capitulate in Stalingrad; judgement on the Germans' chances of victory after Stalingrad; moral judgement on the assassination attempt of Count Stauffenberg; assumed end of the Second World War had the attempt been successful; feeling of capitulation in 1945 as defeat or liberation; assessment of the possibility to avoid construction of the Berlin Wall in 1961; border opening in November 1989 as goof or deliberate policy of GDR government; judgement on the possibility of an independent GDR country instead of reunification; assumptions about the East-West reunification will of the protest movement in the GDR; mentioning the Holocaust too frequently in Germany; memory of the Holocaust also in future generations; attitude to a Holocaust Memorial in Berlin; erecting this Memorial for Jewish and non-Jewish victims; responsibility of future generations for the crimes in the Third Reich; attitude to considering the topic of National Socialism finished.

sex; age (classified); marital status; living together with a partner; school degree (East or West); government examination or similar; degree recognized; completed occupational training; employment; assessment of risk to one's own job; occupation group; household size and number of persons 18 years old or older; head of household and his occupation group and employment; union member in household; religious denomination; religiousness; jeopardy to job or unemployment of close persons; party inclination and party identification; judgement on the relative decrease in young people in Germany as serious problem; most important reasons for lack of children; number of children in household; renewed decision for children; desire for children; most important reasons not to have children.

Also encoded was: day of survey; state.

Variable Groups

Document Description

Full Title

Election Study 1998 (Politbarometer)

Study Description

Full Title

Election Study 1998 (Politbarometer)

Identification Number


Authoring Entity

Name Affiliation
M. Berger, M. Jung, D. Roth Forschungsgruppe Wahlen, Mannheim

Data Distributor

Name Affiliation Abbreviation
GESIS Data Archive for the Social Sciences GESIS - Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences, Cologne, Germany GESIS

Bibliographic Citation

Information on bibliographic citation of research data and study related documents can be found here:

Topic Classification

Political Attitudes and Behavior


Research area: FRG

Time Method

January 1998 to December 1998

Data Collector

Forschungsgruppe Wahlen, Mannheim

Sampling Procedure

Multi-stage random sample: sample of household addresses according to the RLD procedure and sample of residential population eligible to vote according to a birthday key

Mode of Data Collection

Telephone interview with standardized questionnaire

Availability Status


Other References Note

Further Remarks

The dataset consists of a cumulation of the monthly Politbarometers conducted in 1998. In September three surveys were conducted. This results in total number of 14 surveys.

Data Files Description

File Name


Overall Case Count


Overall Variable Count


Type of File

Nesstar 200801


Metadata Index

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