Message to NFPs : Australians “More Progressive” Than Previously Thought
21 July 2011 at 3:14 pm
Some 55% of Australians want business to contribute more to the community and society overall, according to new research that suggests Australians are more progressive in their views than previously thought.
The new research indicates that Australians support a wide range of progressive issues including indigenous recognition in the constitution, gay marriage, Australia becoming a republic and investment in human services rather than personal tax cuts.
Respondents were also asked would they generally prefer business to contribute to more national charities or more local charity organisations.
Australians were clear, 67% to 19% , saying that their preference was for business to support local charities rather than national, according to the research, which was released this week by new strategic communications and government relations firm, Progressive Advisory.
When asked about which type of organisations they would like business to support they stated they would prefer smaller less known charities (30%) and organisations running innovative programs in need of investment (44%) rather than larger more well known organisations (11%) with 15% stating they did not know.
The research, undertaken in conjunction with leading researchers AMR, polled more than 1500 adult Australians for their views on a wide range of current issues including workplace relations, the environment, social issues and the role of business within the community to measure how progressive the population really is.
Progressive Advisory’s Managing Director, Andrew Johnson says the results reveal that while some progressive issues have been lambasted as only having support among a narrow sector of the community, they now in fact have mainstream and majority support.
Johnson says the polling results show a significant support for progressive issues and there is a strong message to the Not for Profit sector that there should be increased dialogue between the business community and the NFP world.
According to the Progressive Advisory research the most progressive Australians are likely to be female aged between 55-64. They are also more likely to live in South Australia and Victoria, whereas the least progressive Australians are more likely to reside in Western Australia and Queensland.
What do Australians believe?
- 74% of Australians feel the gap between the wealthy and less wealthy is widening
- 51% are in support of gay marriage with only 31% against
- 58% are in support of Indigenous peoples being recognized in the Australian constitution as the
- original inhabitants, with only 18% against
- 42% are in favour of Australia becoming a republic “in their lifetime” with 32% against
- 67% said they want business to do more on the environment
- 55% said they want business to contribute more to the community and society overall
- Only 26% feel Australia is a fairer place than 10 years ago, with 48% stating it was “less fair”
- More than seven in 10 Australians support investing in education, health and child care rather than receiving a personal tax cut – and among those supporting investment in services health is the big winner at 71% and education 24%
- 55% said they were in favour of taxing high polluting industries
Andrew Johnson says this polling indicates there are significant gains to be made for companies and organisations that make serious moves to engage and communicate with the community, and for political parties that can harness voters that support these causes and issues.
The research was conducted online between June 15-20, 2011. The polling was undertaken prior to the release of the ALP’s proposed climate change plan.
Andrew Johnson is a former CEO of the Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS) and an international consultant specialising in strategic management, program strategy and development, lobbying and campaigning. He has worked for UN agencies and some of the largest NGOs in the world developing and implementing global strategic plans.
Progressive Advisory says it works with the corporate sector on social responsibility and conscious capitalism, supporting strategic planning and communications of civil society groups and assisting organisations and business to work with progressive issues.
The survey results can be found at http://www.progressiveadvisory.com.au/Survey_of_Progressive_society.html