Citizen´s attitudes towards Rule of Law and the Covid-19 Pandemic 

Similar to the first research into the attitudes of the V4 citizens, the project continued with the second wave of citizens´ consultations, this time on the topics of rule of law, including the attitudes towards topics like corruption, media freedom and minority rights, and the topic of the covid-19 pandemic and the European response to it. 

We decided to continue with the format of citizens´ consultations, given the efficiency of this methodology and positive feedback from the first wave. The project partners prepared a set of questions on the 2 main topics, and why we kept most of them the same in all 4 countries to ensure the ability to compare the results later on, we added and/or adjusted some of the questions to fit the country specific situations.  

With the help of trained interviewers, we approached citizens in all 4 countries for one-on-one structured interviews. The participants once again firstly answered the prepared set of questions and then provided their own additional feedback, and/or asked some more questions. In total, we met with 1403 participants across the 4 countries in person and gathered their inputs. To ensure even more representative results, we supported this research by a computer assisted survey, asking additional 1600 citizens similar questions. 

Read about the major findings from each of the countries below and find more about the participant data in the reports section. 


Slovaks are highly distrustful, as up to 52.3% of them indicated that most people are rather not be trusted and 17.5% that definitely not.   

Surprisingly, there is considerable dissatisfaction in Slovakia with the development of the country after the revolution in 1989, with up to 44.9% of people being rather dissatisfied and 22.9% being very dissatisfied. The paradox is that even though the majority of people (35%) feel European, almost 35% of people are inclined to leave the EU. Thus, the polarization of society is evident in many ways. Slovaks feel a high degree of mistrust towards institutions, the least trustworthy of which are members of parliament, the president as well as NATO. 


Poland´s place is in the EU according to its citizens, despite their negative attitude toward the country´s general direction and development.  

The consultations show that Poles have the most confidence in 3 institutions: NATO (81%), the military (76%) and the European Union (67%). The least: toward television public television (72% distrust), the Sejm (68%) and members of the government (68%). Interestingly, the majority, as many as 70% of participants, believe that it is necessary to include independent institutions in the decision-making process, even if those decisions will be made more slowly – 30% support a more authoritarian stance, indicating that it is it is more effective to have a “strong leader” who will sometimes break the rules to achieve a goal. 


Pro-EU attitudes of Hungarians manifest themselves in three distinct domains. Large majorities of respondents claim to hold a European identity (86%), would vote to remain in a hypothetic referendum (82%), and would support the introduction of the euro (62%). By contrast, only a minority (44%) see the national interest being aligned with the EU’s interest.  

Presentation online.

The majority of Hungarian society has little trust in political actors (government, parliament) and in state institutions, such as the national television, bank, and the courts. This might be due to the fact that Hungarians are sceptical about the independence of these institutions from the government.  

For most Hungarians, corruption is not part of their daily lives and they do not find any form of it acceptable on a personal level.     


Czechs remain pro-European and support membership in the EU, trust the police, army and NATO, think the rights of minorities are protected and support freedom of speech. 

The second phase of the citizens´ consultations, on the topic of the Rule of Law and Covid-19, took place throughout Czechia in April. The main results are that the Czechs are still pro-European, with 77% stating that they feel European and 64% stating that in case of a referendum on exit from the EU they would vote for staying. However, an overwhelming majority is still against the currency of the euro, with only 24% stating they would definitely or rather support it. In general, the more pro-EU are the younger, richer and more educated citizens.  

In the case of trust in the institutions, the Czechs overwhelmingly trust the police, army, NATO, regional authorities, and courts. That is followed by the newly-elected President of the Republic and the European Union, the least trusted are the Parliament and the government. However, the trust in courts seems to be split, and in the index of Justice Perception, 57% are either strong optimists or optimists.