Sharing from WAPOR Leaders (May 2023)

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Robert Chung WAPOR President 2023-2024

Note: This document was translated from English into many different languages. In case of any discrepancy or inconsistency between the English version and any other translation, the English version shall always prevail.

In my last letter published in April, I invited three colleagues to chip in their sharing. This month, I have invited three more colleagues to do the same. They are our Vice President and President-Elect David Jodice, Chair of the Membership Committee Tamas Bodor, and President of our Asia Pacific Regional Chapter Jibum Kim. They have written in different styles and at different lengths, here are the short versions. The long versions, if available, are appended at the end, after a brief activity update.

  • David[i]: 2023 began for me with the continuation of my most important 2022 activity: the Freedom Report. It is almost done (famous last words) but it is the longest and most complex of such reports since 1984. Another key activity is expanding our membership which leads to the long-term strength, relevance, and impact of WAPOR. It will also give us increased country coverage and expand the National Representative network. I am also involved with the Finance Committee in a longer-term effort to build WAPOR’s resources. We are structuring this under a new idea initiated by Robert – The WAPOR Global Development Fund. We have begun research on funding sources and how to align our goals and needs with their values and practices. Any members who want to share their experience are encouraged to reach out to me.
  • Tamas: I have had the privilege to serve WAPOR as Membership Committee chair under the leadership of multiple presidents. Over these years, we’ve made efforts to listen to our members. We developed and implemented an annual membership survey and sought feedback from WAPOR annual conference participants. It was especially illuminating to learn about the impact of the pandemic on our members as many of them had themselves offered critical, pandemic-related survey data to policymakers and the public in their countries. As WAPOR continues its return to in-person conferences, we seek to listen to our members more extensively. This spring the Membership Committee was reconstituted by adding representatives from each continent and chapter. I look forward to our renewed collaborative efforts to plan and initiate actions towards our goal: a growing and thriving membership across the globe.
  • Jibum[ii]: It’s the 6th year since we started WAPOR ASIA in 2018, which became WAPOR ASIA PACIFIC in 2022. We have held five annual conferences: Taiwan 2018, India 2019, Malaysia 2020 (online), Thailand 2021 (online), and the United Arab Emirates 2022. The 6th annual conference this year will be held in Canberra, Australia, hosted by the National University of Australia in early December. In Fall 2024, WAP will hold its 7th annual conference together with the WAPOR conference in Seoul, Korea. With financial support from WAPOR, the WAP Academy Project was started in 2022, which provides educational materials in free access for the WAPOR community, especially for those who needs to access educational materials about public opinion research. We will soon call for papers for this year’s conference and nominations for the WAP Lifetime Achievement Award.

Here comes an activity update for January 1 to May 10, based on our Executive Director’s Reports, presented in a table format:

Portfolio / Area

Progress / Update

Constitution Review

Two task forces on the Constitution review were appointed at the Executive Council (ExCo) meeting on Mar31 ; ExCo has finalized the proposed revisions for the currently ongoing membership consultation due by June 05. WAPOR members with active membership are welcome to send their feedback  by email and register to participate in the meeting with the WAPOR leadership via Zoom. Council Meeting will finalize the proposed revisions for membership voting by Jun13, and the referendum on the Constitution review will begin  by Jun20.


WAPOR started year 2023 with 241 active members as of  January 1. By May 10 this number increased to 378 members, excluding chapter-only members. We invite all WAPOR members to check their membership status by logging into your online accounts and renew your membership for 2023 if you have not done so yet.

General Development

In 2023, the following meetings have been held according to constitutional provisions: three ExCo Meetings on Jan30, Mar31, May05 and two Council Meeting on Feb13 and Apr26. At our website, A “Letter from Two WAPOR Presidents” was published on Jan03, followed by a “Letter by the President” on April 24 after 100 days at office.; “WAPOR Annual Report” was published in February 2023. At present President’ Office and Secretariat are planning a series of consultations with Regional Chapters.

Finance and Administration

WAPOR Finance Committee met on Jan24, Mar01 and Apr12, and will have their next meeting  on Jun02. The Committee has reviewed many financial procedures, and it has recommended that WAPOR Secretariat keeps a separate sub-account for all regional chapters.

Website development

AI translation plug-in was installed on WAPOR website on Mar01, allowing members and visitors to read the content of the website in over 100 languages. More human translated documents will be uploaded in due course. Lists of members of all standing committees are now displayed under “Leadership” sub-page List of National Representatives is constantly being updated. Finally, an “Online store” added to the membership portal to facilitate donations in support of awards and student membership

Professional Standards Committee

The committee is busy finalizing the ESOMAR-WAPOR Freedom Report 2022 that currently in its final stage of editing. The 2022 freedom survey increased the number of surveyed countries from 130 to 157, with the report becoming one of the biggest in the WAPOR history.

Publications Committee

First meeting of the year was held on Apr11, and the second meeting planned for May30. Publications Committee is overseeing procedures associated with the publishing of the International Journal for Public Opinion Research (IJPOR). The journal includes also WAPOR activity brief, drafted by the Committee. IJPOR impact factor in 2021 is 1.872.

Liaison Committee

First meeting of the year was held on Apr21. Liaison Committee Chair represented WAPOR at the mid-term meeting of the International Science Council (ISC) on May10-12 in Paris. ISC mission is to catalyze and convene scientific expertise, advice and influence on issues of major concern to both science and society. ISC will also send a video greeting to our WAPOR annual conference.

Conference Committee

First meeting of the year took place on Mar15. WAPOR 2023 annual conference will held on September 19-22 at Paris Lodron University of Salzburg (Austria). Holli Semetko (USA) serves as the Conference Committee Chair, and Wolfgang Aschauer (Austria) serves as the Local Conference Chair. Abstracts for the conference were accepted on Mar01-Apr30; 334 submissions received and are currently under review. Authors shall be notified about the results by June 1, when the registration open. Three keynote speakers and 6 training workshops have been confirmed for this year’s program. The committee has already started to plan for the Seoul Conference in 2024, the local organization committee will meet in June this year to finalize the dates.

Membership Committee

First meeting of the year held on Apr14 where further analyses of the results of the 2022 Membership Survey was conducted.  The 49 National Representatives (NRs) have been nominated or got their term renewed in 2023. All  NRs have been issued certifications of appreciation.

Education Committee

Meetings held on Jan19 and Mar06. Four webinars already held in 2023, one by SSA and three by WAPOR, new methodological and substantive topics for the webinar series in Fall 2023 and Spring 2024 are currently being discussed., The committee is also discussing the possibility of issuing attendance certificate to webinar participants

Regional Chapters

WAPOR Secretariat assisted LATAM to hold their elections from Mar29 to Apr20, and assisted with the organization of their Congress held  on Apr19-21 in Oaxaca, Mexico. WAPOR SSA held their first webinar on Feb23. Finally, WAPOR WAP decided to hold their annual conference on Dec01-05 in Canberra, Australia.

I hope you like this new format of sharing. As always, please let me know how I can do better.

Humbly yours,

Robert Chung
WAPOR President

[i] David Jodice:

The best way to start this letter is with a description of the job of Vice President and President-Elect, from our Constitution: The Vice President shall act as the President’s deputy. S/He shall automatically become President the following term. S/He shall take over the Presidency if the office becomes vacant. This is both simple and ambiguous, so Robert and I get to define it in the ways we think best for the next two years. And, given how the WAPOR Constitution works, we will be working together for a total of four overlapping years, as one election provides for three two-year terms (VP, President and Past President).

2023 began for me with the continuation of the key 2022 activity: the Freedom Report. The key results have already been presented at ESOMAR (Amsterdam), WAPOR (Dubai), Gallup International Association (Madrid) and in 2023 the ESOMAR LatAm Conference (Mexico City) by either myself or Dr. Kathy Frankovic, or in tandem (ESOMAR).  The report is almost done  and it will be the longest and most complex in this series on the freedoms to conduct and publish opinion polls.

Another activity for me, as directed by Robert, was leading a short-fuse task force on the revision of our Constitution in areas related to membership, chapters and liaison relationships. This has tied in well with my joining the WAPOR Membership Committee and working with Angela Ambitho and the leadership of the Sub-Saharan Africa Chapter on their membership growth. WANA, with Samir Abu-Rumman, is my next step in our effort to grow our membership.

As a key part of building the sampling frame for the 2022 Freedom Study, Dr. Kseniya Kizilova (now our Executive Director, then with the World Values Survey), increased the number of countries with National Representatives from 66 to 117 (now at 118). These distinguished colleagues are named on our website, with the dates of their terms. Each one, according to our Constitution, may participate for no more than two consecutive terms so if you are interested in representing the country where you live and practice, teach or comment on public opinion polling, let me know and we will set you up as soon as possible.

I will conclude by sharing that working closely with many WAPOR (and ESOMAR) colleagues over the past four years has been a rewarding and enjoyable experience. A lifelong member of WAPOR for over 30 years, I really ramped up my involvement late in my career. One takeaway – if you love WAPOR and support the mission, jump in as soon as you can. Each position has a term limit, and you can always come back for another round later or a completely different assignment, broadening your experience. A good starting point is a committee. The six committees are listed on the WAPOR website.

[ii] Jibum Kim:
It’s already the 6th year since we started WAPOR ASIA in 2018, which became WAPOR ASIA PACIFIC in 2022. Thanks to the contributions of 27 WAP national representatives and other members, and the generous support from WAPOR, WAP is growing fast.

Up to now, we have held five annual conferences, and two future conferences are being planned. The five conferences held include Taiwan in 2018, India in 2019, Malaysia in 2020 (online mode), Thailand in 2021 (online mode), and the United Arab Emirates in 2022. I want to thank Eric Yu (Taiwan), Yashwant Deshmukh (India), Syed Arabi Idid (Malaysia), Thawilwadee Bureekul (Thailand), and Tatiana Karabchuk (United Arab Emirates) for hosting the conferences and to thank all participating members. The 6th annual conference will be held in Canberra, Australia, hosted by the National University of Australia in early December. In Fall 2024, WAP will hold its 7th annual conference together with the WAPOR conference in Seoul, Korea.

In addition, with financial support from WAPOR, the WAP Academy Project was started in 2022, which provides educational materials free for the WAPOR community, especially for those who have bigger needs to access educational materials about public opinion research. Furthermore, we have set up the WAP Lifetime Achievement Award. Awardees included Mahar Mangahas (Philippines, 2018), Ijaz Gilani (Pakistan, 2019), Takashi Inoguchi (Japan, 2020), Syed Arabi Idid (Malaysia, 2021), and Robert Chung (Hong Kong, 2022). All of them are serving as members of our Advisory Board to share knowledge on the progress of WAP.

We will soon call for papers for this year’s annual conference and also for nominations for the WAP Lifetime Achievement Award. With your support, I am sure we can make WAP the most eminent academic organization in public opinion research in the Asia Pacific Region.