Research and analysis

Public Perceptions of Standards in Public Life in the UK and Europe

A survey comparing public perceptions of standards in public life in the UK with Europe.



Research published on 25 March 2014 by the Committee on Standards in Public Life showed that the UK’s long-term decline in public perceptions of standards in public life is part of a broader trend across Western democracies.

Building on the data collected from the Committee’s UK surveys of the last 10 years, the European Values Survey, the European Social Survey and the Eurobarometer, the research examines European citizens’ perceptions of the probity of public officials, along with their levels of trust and confidence in a range of public institutions. The research finds that British citizens’ assessments of standards in public life are not unusual and they are rarely the most cynical. In fact British citizens’ perceptions and experiences of corruption are lower than those in most other European countries.