New Delhi: COVID19 has spread its tentacles across continents and while countries continue to grapple with the pandemic by following strict lockdowns and closures, our sixth wave of poll shows that while anxiety is palpable, global citizens are more concerned about the vulnerable and the weak. At least 1 in 2 fear for the weak and vulnerable and 1 in 3 are experiencing some bit of anxiety, due to the virus.
Interestingly, while India is amid a 21-day nationwide lockdown, anxiety apart, Indians are experiencing path-breaking new positive experiences, amid the pandemic and lockdown.
74% of urban Indians are hoping to learn a new skill during COVID19, and 72% of urban Indians foresee themselves becoming closer to family and friends, due to COVID19.
“Corona mortality is more among the elderly and those with weaker immune systems. And that is bothering a sizable chunk of urban Indians,” says Amit Adarkar, CEO, Ipsos India.
“Government has taken stern measures in terms of a 21-day nationwide lockdown and with rigorous advisories on prevention across print, TV, radio and digital, for containing corona virus. So, majority of the urban households are without a domestic help, due to emphasis on social distancing and are learning to navigate through household chores, including cooking. Consequently, new skills stem from here and from the fact that due to being closeted at home 24X7, urban Indians are doing new things to kill time and to overcome boredom,” said Amit Adarkar, CEO, Ipsos India.
“Corona Virus outbreak will bring families and friends closer, as they support one another in tiding over these tough times. Among Indians too we see a fair degree of concern for the vulnerable, at the cost of disregard for oneself, though anxiety is highly palpable,” added Adarkar.
What do the global results reveal?
Most people surveyed across the world are most concerned for people who are vulnerable or weak amid the coronavirus pandemic even as lockdowns and closures force millions to isolate themselves.
In 13 of the 15 countries, majorities cited concern for those who are weak and vulnerable at the top of a list of 10 options when asked what best describes how they are feeling today. People in Brazil (70%), Spain and the United Kingdom (66%), Mexico (61%) and Canada, France and Italy (60%) are most likely to express concern for others, while those in Japan (23%) and China (30%) are least concerned.
Fewer people are anxious about their own health, which ranked in the middle of the list of the 10 scenarios.
Darrell Bricker, Global Service Line Leader, Public Affairs, said the findings show that while we may be alone because of social distancing measures, there are signs this crisis is pulling us closer together.
“Even though many of us are avoiding physical contact with other people, it hasn’t diminished our desire to be emotionally connected to them or to the wider world,” said Bricker.
Added to this, a majority (53%) of people surveyed said it’s likely the pandemic will bring them closer to their family and friends. This sentiment is strongest in Asian countries of India (72%), Vietnam (70%), and China (67%). Those in Japan (19%), South Korea (32%) and Germany (41%) are least likely to agree with this.
Many of us are trying to put our new found alone time to good use during this crisis. Two in five (44%) of those surveyed are optimistic they will likely learn a new skill as a result of the outbreak. This sentiment is highest in emerging markets of Vietnam (75%), India (74%), Mexico (64%), China (63%) and Brazil (60%), while those in Germany (42%), South Korea (33%), Spain (32%) and the U.K. (31%) said it was unlikely.
“Almost half of us are looking at this as a glass half full situation that’s freeing up space for personal growth,” said Bricker.
These are the results of an Ipsos survey conducted March 26th to 30th, 2020 on the Global Advisor online platform among 28,000 adults aged 18-74 in Canada and the United States and 16-74 in Australia, Brazil, China, France, Germany, Italy, India, Japan, Mexico, Russia, South Korea, Vietnam and the United Kingdom. Where available, tracking results from Wave 3, conducted February 28-29, February 14-15, and February 7-9 are presented. Sample sizes in previous waves were 1,000 per country.