WAPOR 2023 Conference Awards

WAPOR is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2023 conference awards. We express our gratitude to all nominees and the award committees, and congratulate the winner!

Naomi C. Turner Award 

The Naomi C. Turner Prize is awarded for best graduate student paper presented at our annual conference. This prize was endowed by WAPOR past president Fred Turner in memory of his mother. Fred was president of WAPOR in 1989-1990. A special thank you goes to the 2023 Turner Prize committee, including Mark Gill, Christopher Adams, Cornelia Mothes, Thomas Roessing, and Matthew Barnidge. The committee is pleased to announce the winner of the 2023 Naomi Turner prize is Daniel Casey for his paper “Democratic responsiveness to different forms of public opinion”. Daniel’s research takes an innovative approach to understanding public opinion pressure on political leaders through the analysis of letters received by the Australian Prime Minister John Howard. The committee was impressed by the novelty and scale of this research, including the analysis of over 400,000 letters to PM Howard against over 2,000 media appearances by the Prime Minister between March 1996 and December 2000 (equating to more than 6 million words). The author also obtained interviews with the former Prime Minister and other senior officials. Together this data and approach forms the basis for more research and analysis, and the committee believes these types of innovative studies deserve to be showcased.

Elizabeth H. Nelson Award

The Elizabeth H. Nelson Prize is awarded for best conference paper from a society in transition. This prize was endowed by WAPOR past president Elizabeth Nelson who was president of WAPOR from 1991-1992. Thank you to our review committee members for the Nelson Prize – Constanza Cilley, Michael Nitsche, Rico Neumann, Saidul Haq and Eva Aizpurua. This year’s Nelson Prize goes to Nataliya Reshetova at the Ukrainian Catholic University of Lviv for her paper “Support for Democracy in Ukraine: The Reinforcing Effect of Critical Junctures.” Her paper assesses the growth of democracy support in Ukraine over the past two decades, focusing on the role of geography and language in shaping people’s national identity. Employing secondary quantitative data from the World Values Survey, European Values Study and European Social Survey, and using descriptive and inferential statistics, Nataliya finds that support for democracy increased more in the country’s Eastern regions due to the reinforcement of national identity following the 2014 Russian military aggression in the Donbas and the annexation of Crimea. They also highlight a positive relationship between the use of the Ukrainian language and support for democracy as part of national identity consolidation. The award committee appreciates the authors’ dataset selection and integration as well as hypothesis testing efforts, noting the paper’s clarity and relevance to current issues.

Janet Harkness Award

WAPOR expresses our gratitude to the members of the Janet Harkness Student Paper Award Committee. These include Chan Hoong Leong, Henning Silber, Sunghee Lee, Heather Smalley, Ana Villar and Mariano Torcal. After considerable debate, the committee decided not to present an award this year. That was a difficult decision and we recognize and appreciate the time and effort invested by members of this award committee.

Alexis de Tocqueville Award

De Tocqueville, of course, is best known for his book “On Democracy in America.” Although the book was based in part on his travels through the United States in the early 19th century, it is believed one of the main goals of the work was to help the people of France get a better understanding of their position between a fading aristocratic order and an emerging democratic order. He saw democracy as an equation that balanced liberty and equality, concern for the individual and as well as for the community. Given the ongoing relevance of his observations, this award is given annually to a paper presented at the WAPOR conference that is concerned with democracy and public opinion in the world, whether in consolidated or in emerging democracies. I would like to thank former WAPOR Presidents Claire Durand, Marita Carballo, Kathy Frankovic, Alejandro Moreno and current President Rober Chung, who served with me on the selection committee for this year’s Award. The 2023 award goes to Bernardo Mackenna, Ricardo Gonzalez, Adolfo Fuentes, and Esteban Munoz for their paper Breaking The Populist Spell: A Comparative Study of The Association Between Interpersonal Ties and Populist Preferences”. This paper examines the relationship between social ties across socioeconomic groups and populism at the individual-level using cross-national data from the 2017 ISSP (International Social Survey Programme) study on Social Networks and Resources, and the 2021 Chilean sample of the CNEP survey. Analyses revealed that having higher status ties correlates with lower acceptance of populist politics. This association is subsequently found to be mediated by interpersonal network status, supporting the claims of Alexis de Tocqueville and William Kornhauser regarding the role of interpersonal interactions in buffering citizens from the allures of populism.

Robert M. Worcester Award

The esteemed Robert M. Worcester Prize is given annually to an outstanding paper published in the International Journal of Public Opinion Research. Thank you to the award committee, including Tom Smith, Paulina Tabery, Jibum Kim, Anna Andreenkova, Constanza Cilley and Robert Worcester as ex officio member. The recipients of the 2022 Worcester Award is Matthew DeBell of Stanford University for his paper “Measuring Political Knowledge and Not Search Proficiency in Online Surveys.” The award committee comments that, with the rise of online surveys, it becomes crucial to address the issue of respondents’ cheating on political knowledge questions on online data collection mode. This paper tackles this problem using survey experiments with multiple datasets. This research has the potential to generate greater interest in knowledge questions within the realm of online surveys and advances effective ways of addressing this issue. It is also extremely well written – structured, precise, consequential, and presents clear hypotheses, arguments, and conclusions.

Sir Robert Worcester sends his greetings to the 2023 Award Recipient.

WAPOR Service Award

WAPOR Service Award is given to honour voluntary translators who have helped WAPOR to translate its key documents into different languages so they can be more easily communicated with our membership. This award is allocated by the WAPOR Executive Council following the recommendation of the Secretariat. This year’s recipients are Marita Carballo and Anastasia Saponova.

Helen Dinerman Award

This award, given since 1981, honors particularly significant contributions to survey research methodology. The award, presented annually to an individual or individuals, is in memory of Helen Dinerman’s scientific achievements over three decades of public opinion research. Recent recipients of the award include Takashi Inoguchi, Mitchell Seligson, Juan Díez Nicolás, Michael Traugott, and Christian Haerpfer.

A special thank you to this year’s review committee, including Juan Diez Nicolas, Michael Traugott, Christian Haerpfer, Takashi Inoguchi and Patricia Moy. This year, we have two Dinerman Award recipients.

The first of these is Professor Hans-Dieter Klingemann for his lifetime contributions to the furtherance of survey and public opinion research. Among these accomplishments, he was the Founder and Director of the Paul-Larzarsfeld-Gesellschaft in Germany. He was also one of the founders of academic survey research in post-Communist Europe and post-Soviet Eurasia, training and establishing survey companies and academic survey research institutes in Hungary, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland, and in Baltic and Balkans countries. In addition, Dr. Klingemann also made critical leadership contributions to several international comparative social science research projects, including several waves of the World Values Survey and the Comparative Study of Electoral Systems. For his leadership and extraordinary accomplishments, and for his continuous and wide-ranging impact, WAPOR is proud to honor Dr. Hans-Dieter Klingemann with the 2023 WAPOR Helen Dinerman Award.

This year we also recognize with the Dinerman Award Professor Daniel Kahneman, who’s research on the psychology of judgment and decision-making has illuminated the substantive and methodological study of how individuals think, feel, and engage with the world around them. His distinguished contributions have challenged assumptions about human rationality and, by extension, assumptions about the logic of underlying research on public opinion. His work has sparked thousands of studies and garnered more than half a million academic citations. For his thought leadership and all his extraordinary accomplishments, and for his continuous and wide-ranging impact, WAPOR is also proud to honor Dr. Daniel Kahneman with the 2023 WAPOR Helen Dinerman Award.

Speech of Hans-Dieter Klingemann at the Awards Ceremony

Hans-Dieter Klingemann

WAPOR, Salzburg, Austria

September 21, 2023


Ladies and Gentlemen, dear friends,

I am proud to be named co-recipient of WAPOR’s 2023 Dinerman Award. Thank you. It means a lot me. I am allowed only a couple of minutes for a short remark. I’ll use the time to, first, praise WAPOR and second, to highlight the early academic context and pay tribute to a teacher who paved my way to the profession. My experiences as a student of public opinion date back to 1957. Thus, my remarks will not be on future development. Rather, they will deal with the role of WARPOR and where I have come from.

After the Second World War public opinion research was not well developed in Europe. The victorious Allies used the method to monitor attitudes and beliefs of the populace in their various occupied territories. In our part of the world data generated by way of opinion surveys were looked at with suspicion.

Here commercial survey institutes and interested scholars in academia badly needed to organize themselves to systematically discuss methodological as well as substantive issues.

WAPOR can rightfully claim to have made the major contribution to this process. Established in 1947 – jointly with ESOMAR, the European Society for Opinion and Market Research – it has successfully established standards for data generation and data analysis, as well as introduced a code of ethics for public opinion researchers. WAPOR’s conferences and meetings also helped to bridge the gap between scholars working in commercial institutes and in academia.

WARPOR has been true to its goals to this very day. For example, in July 2022, it has released a Task Force Report on Quality in Comparative Surveys and it has renewed its Code of Ethics. This documents WAPOR’s continuing effort to legitimize data, based on survey research, by insisting on methodologically sound data generation, analytical rigor and ethical behavior.

The pursuit of these goals is also reflected in the program of WAPOR’s 76th Annual Conference here in Salzburg, skillfully organized by Kseniya Kizilova, WAPOR’s Executive Director. Wolfgang Anschauer, Local Conference Chair, and Holli Semetko, WAPOR’s Conference Chair, have put together a program which covers pressing problems of public opinion research in a technology-driven world, the potential impact of artificial intelligence in particular.

Let me add now some reminiscences of my way into the field of survey research and public opinion and pay tribute to some of those who have helped.

Born in 1937 I am a ‚Kriegskind‘, a war child having to cope with the horrors of the NAZI regime. In Fall of 1957 I met Ute – the love of my life – and we entered Albertus Magnus University in Cologne to study business administration. However, my real interest was in Sociology and Political Science. Like some of my good friends – such as Max Kaase and Franz Urban Pappi- I wanted to know whether or not German citizens would ever come to support a democratic regime. To find out I finally focused on the impact of political institutions and political attitudes.   

I was lucky to have chosen Cologne University to study. Here I met Erwin K. Scheuch, Rudolf Wildenmann and other young academics sharing my interests and pursuing an empirical analytical approach. I attracted the attention of Erwin K. Scheuch who became one of the two chairholders in Sociology in 1964, a position he held until 1993. Scheuch and Wildenmann recruited me for the famous 1961 German election study. In 1965 I became Scheuch’s first doctoral student and served nearly 10 years as his assistant, helping to build the Central Archive for Empirical Social Research in Cologne. Scheuch was a brilliant teacher both of theory and methods. He also opened the doors to further education at the University of Michigan and its Institute for Social Research. Here I met Philipp E. Converse, my role model, as well as Samuel Barnes and Ronald Inglehart, friends and colleagues for a lifetime.

At the Central Archive we cooperated with commercial institutes to archive their surveys for secondary analysis. This way I came to know and admire the West German pioneers of public opinion research. In academia we learned a lot from Graf von Stackelberg and Graf Blücher who put up EMNID in 1945 (to cover the British Occupation Zone); from Elisabeth Noelle-Neumann and Friedrich Tennstädt establishing the Institut für Demoskopie in 1947 (mainly covering the French Occupation Zone); as well as from Gerhard Baumert and the DIVO Institute which, since 1951, took over and continued the survey activities of the US Office of Military Government for Germany. I should probably also mention Renate and Wolfgang Ernst, who founded INFRATEST in 1947. Later on they helped when we established the Center for Survey Research, Methodology and Data Analysis, ZUMA, in Mannheim. There is no way to do justice to the details of this early history of public opinion research in West Germany. However, my short report should be sufficient to demonstrate that in these early years the two worlds of commercial polling and academic survey research have been in touch and profited from one another. Erwin K. Scheuch has insisted to honor this tradition. This is another reason why I want to pay tribute to my academic teacher who passed away in 2003.

Public opinion research has come a long way. Today, it is a legitimate and self- evident method for modern society to observe itself. With my few remarks I wanted to remind that this was not always the case. And it is due to organizations such as WAPOR, and efforts of individuals such as Helen Dinerman in the US, and Erwin K. Scheuch or Rudolf Wildenmann in Germany, that this has become a reality.

Thank you for your attention.



Ekkehard Mochmann. In Memoriam: Erwin K. Scheuch (1928-2003). Communications 29 (2004), 267-269.

Erwin K.: Scheuch. The cross-cultural use of sample surveys: problems of comparability. In Stein Rokkan, ed. Comparative Research across Cultures and Nations. Paris/The Hague: ISSC/ Mouton 1968, 176-209.

Erwin K. Scheuch. Theoretical Implications of Comparative Survey Research: The Wheel of Cross-Cultural Methodology keeps on being Re-Invented. International Sociology, vol 4, No. 2 (1989), 147-167.

Erwin K. Scheuch. Die Entwicklung der Umfrageforschung in der Bundesrepublik Deutschland in den siebziger und achtziger Jahren. ZUMA Nachrichten, 23(45) (1999), 7-22.

Erwin K. Scheuch. History and visions in the development of data services for the social sciences. International Social Science Journal, vol. 55, issue 177 (2004), 385-399.