COVD-19 pandemic focus groups and polls: FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002

Information requested

  • The total number of focus groups and polls that have been conducted by the Scottish Government (or by an agency on behalf of the Scottish Government) to measure public opinion on the matter of the COVID-19 pandemic. I would like this information from 15 March 2020 to 31 May 2020.
  • The total cost of these focus groups and polls.


Since the onset of the pandemic, we have commissioned multiple waves of three different surveys, as well as qualitative research, to understand and measure public opinions and perceptions of COVID-19, support public health messaging and assess compliance with public health guidance. These activities were conducted by research agencies.

Between 15 March and 31 May we commissioned:

  • A Scottish boost sample to an existing online global survey run by Ipsos MORI. This survey gives international comparisons on views of COVID-19. Ten waves of this survey were completed within the timeframe.
  • A bespoke weekly online survey from YouGov. This survey focuses on COVID-19 attitudes and knowledge. Ten waves of this survey were completed within the timeframe.
  • A bespoke telephone survey from AECOM. This survey focuses on COVID-19 travel and transport. Two waves of this survey were completed within the timeframe.
  • Nine online mini focus groups and 14 online depth interviews.

The total cost of these activities has been £190,400 excluding VAT.
More information about the two weekly online surveys can be found in our recently published reports for April and May.

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Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

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