Gap in trust between informed public and mass population at all-time high, 2019 Edelman Trust Barometer reveals
TORONTO, Feb. 14, 2019 /CNW/ - As Canada prepares for the upcoming federal election, the 2019 Edelman Trust Barometer reveals a pessimistic population increasingly divided on how much to trust the key institutions of media, government, business and NGOs.
Among the general population, trust in all four institutions is up compared to 2018 results, however the gap between the informed public (college-educated, higher income, regular consumers of business and public policy news) and the mass population has never been wider. The trust index of the informed public jumped to 74 per cent, up 12 points from 2018, and is a full 20 points above the mass population trust index, which is at 54 per cent. Canada's trust inequality between the mass population and informed public is the second highest of all 27 markets studied.
The gap is also apparent in Canadians' views of the future. Only 34 per cent of the mass population believe their lives and the lives of their families will be better off in five years, compared to 53 per cent of the informed public. Similarly, 50 per cent of the mass population believes the system is failing them, as opposed to only 36 per cent of the informed public.
The 2019 Edelman Trust Barometer also captures a country increasingly concerned about the weaponization of 'fake news':
- Seventy-one per cent of Canadians admit to worrying about false information or fake news being used as a weapon, up six points from last year.
- Continuing the upward trend observed in 2018, 71 per cent of Canadians expressed trust in traditional media.
- A sharp increase of trust in owned media, up 14 points to 45 per cent, demonstrates many people are looking to businesses and brands as sources for information.
- Anxiety about the future may also be driving Canadians to be more engaged in media: 42 per cent now claim to consume news weekly or more (up 11 points from 2018), while the level of those disengaged from news has dropped to 33 per cent from 54 per cent.
With much global uncertainty, Canadians are turning to business leaders to lead the way on a variety of issues, with 79 per cent saying that CEOs should take the lead on change rather than wait for government to impose it.
"While Canadians are increasingly supporting CEOs as agents of positive change over the past few years, what's striking this year is Canadians are looking directly to their own employers," says Lisa Kimmel, president and CEO, Edelman Canada. "Sixty-seven per cent of employees say it's vitally important for their CEO to lead during challenging times, and to participate in conversations about important societal and business issues. It's a responsibility as much as an opportunity."
For full results and to watch the launch event live at 7:30 a.m. EST, visit www.edelman.ca/Trust.
Edelman is a leading global communications marketing firm that partners with many of the world's largest and emerging businesses and organizations, helping them evolve, promote and protect their brands and reputations. Among its many honors, the firm was awarded the Cannes Lions Grand Prix for PR, named one of 2018 "Agencies to Watch" by Advertising Age and "Global Agency of the Year" by both the Holmes Report and PRWeek, and cited five times by Glassdoor as one of the "Best Places to Work." Edelman owns specialty firms Edelman Intelligence (research) and United Entertainment Group (entertainment, sports, lifestyle).
About the Edelman Trust Barometer
The 2019 Edelman Trust Barometer is the firm's 19th annual trust and credibility survey. The survey was powered by research firm Edelman Intelligence and consisted of 30-minute online interviews conducted between October 19 and November 16, 2018. The Barometer considers three populations: The Informed Public (college-educated, in the top quarter for household income in their age group, and who regularly consume or engage with business news and public policy), the Mass Population, (everyone excluding the Informed Public) and the General Population, which refers to all those surveyed. The 2019 Edelman Trust Barometer online survey sampled more than 33,000 respondents, which includes 6,000 informed public respondents across 27 markets, including 1,500 general population respondents and 200 informed public respondents in Canada. All informed public respondents met the following criteria: aged 25-64, college-educated; household income in the top quartile for their age in their country; read or watch business/news media at least several times a week; follow public policy issues in the news at least several times a week. For more information, visit https://www.edelman.com/trust-barometer
SOURCE Edelman Public Relations Worldwide
For further information: or to book an interview, please contact: Sophie Nadeau, Edelman Canada: [email protected]