• Presentation

Attitude towards science and technology in european new member countries: A cross-national study

Citation

Liao, D., Jiang, L., Palmer, D., Liu, X., & McCutcheon, A. (2009, May). Attitude towards science and technology in european new member countries: A cross-national study. Presented at Annual Meeting of the American Association for Public Opinion Association, Fontainebleau Resort, Miami Beach, FL, May 25, .

Abstract

The public attitude towards science and technology has a prominent impact on the level of governmental support for research, the number of young people devoted to the science and technology career, and the application and improvement of technology. In this study, confirmatory factor analysis models are conducted to measure three dimensions of the public attitude towards science and technology (knowledge of fundamental science and technology facts and concepts, optimism regarding science and technology, and attitude toward the sciences and related areas as professions) and demographic influences on these dimensions. Due to the fact that a considerable amount of data is not missing at random, full information maximum likelihood estimators with missing data were utilized. As an efficient technique to test the cross-national construct comparability of the three dimensions across the 10 countries, multiple-group confirmatory factor analyses are performed. This implies testing the equality of factor loadings and intercepts across groups. This equality is required to ensure that factors have the same interpretation in all groups, which is necessary when comparing any aspect of the factor distribution across groups. Finally, comparable groups of countries are compared through three dimensions and the effects of the differences on several economic indices of new member countries are discussed. The data are from a series of surveys modeled on the Standard Eurobarometer in the candidate countries of the European Union, conducted by the Gallup Organization-Hungary in September 2002.