The Lowy Institute’s polling on attitudes towards democracy has provoked considerable debate since we first asked Australians for their views in 2012. There is mixed awareness of democracies in our region amongst Australians, with the majority recognising Japan, India, Papua New Guinea and Taiwan as democracies, but not agreeing that Indonesia is a democracy. In 2019, support for democracy in Australia was stable, with 65% of Australians saying that ‘democracy is preferable to any other kind of government’. One in five (22%) say that ‘in some circumstances, a non-democratic government can be preferable’, while 12% say that ‘for someone like me, it doesn’t matter what kind of government we have’.
12 questions match this theme
Below is a list of possible threats to the vital interest of Australia in the next ten years. Do you see this as a critical threat, an important but not critical threat, or not an important threat at all?
For each of the following please say whether it is a major reason, a minor reason or not a reason why you personally think that [In some circumstances, a non-democratic government can be preferable OR For someone like me, it doesn’t matter what kind of government we have]...
And now I will ask you about the United Nations and human rights. The United Nations has set out a number of human rights that it says apply to all people throughout the world. I am going to read you a few of these. For each one, please say whether you personally agree or disagree that it is important for you here in Australia. And is that strongly or partly?