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Ending hunger, and reducing global inequality and poverty: what are French people willing to do to get policy-makers to take action?

Published 2 September 2019 in Surveys

When asked about whether they want to help end hunger, inequality and poverty in the world, French people demonstrate a willingness which is not without political and economic consequence. For example, to encourage decision-makers to take action against these three problems, respondents seem to be highly motivated:

  • 45% of French people would be willing to change their vote for a candidate who took these questions into account,
  • 41% say they are ready to take part in a public mobilisation (e.g. sign a petition),
  • 37% claim to be ready to change their own behaviour as consumers (e.g. boycott a company).
    Far from being indifferent to international solidarity and development issues, then, French people are in fact more than ready to show their support for the poorest through their political or economic decisions.

Faced with the major challenges stemming from global inequality, politicians, businesses and decision-makers must therefore réalise that appearing to neglect these issues could have a real cost for their campaigns or activities.

However, individual forms of individual engagement appear less frequent for French people, with only 16% ready to give a donation, 19% willing to do volunteering, or 18% to join a protest.

It seems in fact as if French people believe that the key players in resolving these issues, both in terms of capacity and responsibility, are their economic or political decision-makers rather than citizens at their individual level.

A different approach to encourage their politicians to take action on these issues, according to respondents’ political preferences

In general, left-wing voters are more likely than the average French person to be ready to get involved in order to encourage their politicians to do more on inequality, hunger and poverty in the world. Left-wing and center voters also align over a willingness to vote according to these principles, as well as over a readiness to engage individually (e.g. making a donation, or volunteering).

Center-voters have a similar opinion to the average French person when it comes to using petitions or boycotts of a particular company, and give similar responses to right-wing voters when it comes to joining a protest or march.


Further reading

Baromètre de la solidarité internationale n°5 - Les français·e·s, le G7 et les inégalités dans le monde