Public Awareness Research 2017

An Ipsos MORI omnibus poll in March 2017 shows that, at 85%, public awareness of FOI rights in Scotland remains high.

We asked respondents how they prefer to access information about a public body, for example a decision they've taken or a service they provide. 56% would prefer to access information through the organisation's website and 29% would prefer to contact the authority by telephone or email.

Summary of findings

  • 85% of respondents had heard of the Freedom of Information Scotland Act 2002, similar to 2015. There is a reduction in "definitely aware", from 71% in 2015 to 64% in 2017.
  • 94% agreed ("strongly" or "tend to") that it is important for the public to be able to access information.
  • 77% would be more likely to trust an authority that publishes a lot of information about its work.
  • There is strong public agreement ("strongly agree" or "tend to") that the following type of information should be made available by public authorities:
    • how public authorities spend their money (94%)
    • reasons for the decisions public authorities make (90%)
    • how public authorities deliver their services and functions (94%)
    • contracts with other organisations (84%)
    • data and statistics about their performance (93%)

These are the same categories of information that the Commissioner expects public authorities to publish under the Model Publication Scheme.

Download the 2017 public awareness survey results

Public Awareness Research 2017 Report (PDF)

Public Awareness Research 2017 Full Results (PDF)


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