7 January 2020

Survey Findings on Views about the 2019 District Council Election Released by Hong Kong Institute of Asia-Pacific Studies at CUHK



The 2019 District Council Election was held in November. A telephone survey was conducted from 16 to 20 December 2019 by the Hong Kong Institute of Asia-Pacific Studies, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, to gauge public views on the election. It was found that a total of 78.9% of the respondents believed that the 2019 District Council Election was fair and just. However, only 40.4% of those who identified themselves as ‘pro-establishment’ concurred, while 50.9% of them disagreed the election was fair and just.  

Major findings are summarised as follows:

Of the respondents, 78.9% either agreed (51.4%) or strongly agreed (27.5%) that the 2019 District Council Election was fair and just, while 16.1% either disagreed (10.6%) or strongly disagreed (5.5%). Statistical analysis (chi-square test) shows that the results significantly diverged along political preferences. 89.2% of those who identified themselves as ‘non-pro-establishment’ (including ‘pro-democracy’ and ‘pro-localist’), and 76.5% of those who had no specific political preference, agreed or strongly agreed the election was fair and just; while 8.6% and 17.3% disagreed or strongly disagreed, respectively. However, respondents who identified themselves as ‘pro-establishment’ had different opinions. Among them, 50.9% disagreed or strongly disagreed, while 40.4% agreed or strongly agreed.  

When respondents who had cast a vote were asked which issue(s) most affected their vote choice, 47.4% answered ‘political issues’, 26.6% answered ‘livelihood issues’, and 24.7% answered ‘both’. Of those who cast a vote in the election, 50.5% said that the Anti-Extradition Law Amendment Bill movement had affected their vote choice, while 47.2% answered ‘no impact’. Statistical analysis (chi-square test) shows that these results also significantly diverged along political lines. Of those who voted for a ‘non-pro-establishment’ candidate (including ‘pro-democracy’ and ‘pro-localist’ candidates), 55.8% said that the movement had affected their vote choice. The corresponding figures for those who voted for a ‘pro-establishment’ candidate and for an independent candidate were 44.4% and 41.0%, respectively.

In general, 73.3% of the respondents believed that the government’s attention to public opinion ‘would not change’ after the District Council Election, 14.5% answered ‘would increase’, and 8.2% said ‘would decrease’. When asked if the election results were favourable to the Hong Kong Government, 43.6% of the respondents said it was ‘unfavourable’, 13.0% answered ‘favourable’, and 35.0% said ‘no impact’. With regard to the election results’ effect on the political stability of Hong Kong, 40.0% of the respondents believed that the election results were ‘favourable’, 18.8% answered ‘unfavourable’, and 34.2% said ‘no impact’. For the results’ effect on democratic development in Hong Kong, 60.4% of the respondents believed that the election results were ‘favourable’, 12.2% answered ‘unfavourable’, and 18.2% said ‘no impact’.

Lastly, of those who cast a vote in the election, 18.0% said that it was their first time to vote in a District Council Election, while 82.0% responded that it was not.

In this survey, a total of 708 respondents aged 18 or above were successfully interviewed, with a response rate of 38.4%. The sampling error is estimated at plus or minus 3.68 percentage points at the 95% confidence level.