How pro­gres­sive are we?

The Swiss Eco­nom­ics team at Credit Suisse ex­am­ines how pro­gres­sive Swiss at­ti­tudes are with re­spect to Su­pertrends, the ma­jor themes of our time.

Bulletin - - Society -


In 2017, Credit Suisse de­fined five global Su­pertrends to cap­ture the ma­jor eco­nomic, so­cial and po­lit­i­cal trends of our time. The five top­ics are “An­gry so­ci­eties – Mul­tipo­lar world,” “In­fra­struc­ture,” “Tech­nol­ogy,” “Sil­ver econ­omy” and (see the chart on the “Mil­len­ni­als’ val­ues” left for de­tails on the in­di­vid­ual top­ics).

The rel­e­vance of the five Su­pertrends has been con­firmed time and again over the last 12 months. For ex­am­ple, it has be­come very ap­par­ent that our world is be­com­ing in­creas­ingly mul­tipo­lar, news out­lets are re­port­ing on new tech­no­log­i­cal de­vel­op­ments daily and in­fra­struc­ture oc­cu­pies a top spot on al­most every politi­cian’s agenda.


The study pre­sented here is based on the five Su­pertrends. The Credit Suisse Swiss Eco­nom­ics team se­lected five to eight in­di­ca­tors for each Su­pertrend. In all, the study has 31 in­di­ca­tors. The data used was taken from var­i­ous in­ter­na­tional sources and gen­er­ally re­lates to 2016. The in­di­vid­ual in­di­ca­tors have been stan­dard­ized on a scale from –100 to +100, with –100 in­di­cat­ing the least pro­gres­sive and +100 the most pro­gres­sive val­ues from all of the 36 coun­tries stud­ied. The aver­age value of each in­di­ca­tor was cal­cu­lated for each of the five Su­pertrends. The over­all in­dex is cal­cu­lated based on the to­tal of the stan­dard­ized points al­lot­ted to the five Su­pertrends.


On be­half of and in co­op­er­a­tion with Credit Suisse, the mar­ket re­search firm gfs.bern col­lected data on­line for the Progress Barom­e­ter from July to Au­gust 2018, us­ing a rep­re­sen­ta­tive sur­vey of 2,828 vot­ing-age re­spon­dents and 305 opin­ion lead­ers, all of whom re­side in Switzer­land. The sur­vey re­spon­dents were pre­sented with 30 state­ments about de­vel­op­ments in the ar­eas of the econ­omy, so­ci­ety and pol­i­tics and asked to “In­di­cate whether this trend should be ac­cel­er­ated or slowed down.” A re­sponse of +100 means: “You have to rein­vent the wheel in or­der to move for­ward.” A re­sponse of – 100 means: “We need to turn the wheel back­ward.”

On the chart on page 57, “Ne­ces­sity” groups to­gether the re­sponses close to zero or cases where no re­sponse was given, i.e. those groups that can­not be clearly as­signed or are viewed neu­trally. The higher an item is po­si­tioned in the chart, the stronger the re­spon­dents’ con­vic­tion that ac­tion (ac­cel­er­at­ing or slow­ing down the trend) is nec­es­sary. Con­versely, the lower down an item ap­pears in the chart, the more un­cer­tain re­spon­dents (still) are about it. The sta­tis­ti­cal sam­pling er­ror is ±1.9 per­cent­age points. Anal­y­sis of the study en­ti­tled “Com­pat­i­bil­ity and equal rights as the most im­por­tant as­pects of progress: So­cial ad­vances as the ba­sis for progress in pol­i­tics and the econ­omy” (Credit Suisse Progress Barom­e­ter 2018) was car­ried out by a gfs.bern project team.


Project leads at Credit Suisse are Man­dana Razavi and Ka­trin Schaad. The anal­y­sis was pre­pared by Si­mon Brun­ner/am­mann, Brun­ner & Kro­bath (edit­ing, copy, in­ter­views), Bill Schulz/crafft ( lay­out, graph­ics) and Lau­ren Crow (il­lus­tra­tions). The full sur­vey and other ar­ti­cles are avail­able for down­load at: credit- suisse. com/ pro­gress­barom­e­ter

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