The ninth edition of the opinion study case of the Małopolska Region residents

Health protection, ecological awareness, social economy, culture digitalization, social media – these issues were found in the 9th edition of the research opinions of the residents of Malopolska Region 2019.

The residents of Małopolska Region voiced their views on factors affecting health, performing check-up and preventive examinations, assessing a degree of air pollution in the place of residence, sharing knowledge about ecology and taking action to protect the environment. The study also included the subject of social economy and knowledge of the offer of social enterprises, needs and preferences regarding the use of digitized resources of cultural heritage were examined, and how małopolska residents use social media.

One of the most important issues raised in the study was health protection and preventive services. Health topics, especially prevention, have occupied a lot of space for weeks in social life, as well as in the media, especially in the face of the current covid-19 epidemic. Although the study was carried out a few months before the pandemic, it contains many interesting opinions about the general health condition of Małopolska residents

Health – O.K! Research – not necessarily

According to 64% of Małopolska respondents, the factor that determines the health condition of the population to the greatest extent is lifestyle (e.g. physical activity, diet, rest). According to the respondents, access to healthcare is the least important (1/4 of the declaration). So, do residents of Małopolska attach importance to prevention and check-ups before they get sick? It turns out that the inhabitants of the region usually carry out check-ups only if disturbing symptoms occure (55.7% of opinions) and at the request of a doctor (40.1%). The most systematic in carrying out control tests are the inhabitants of Krakow, because over 40.0% responded “I do it systematically”. The fewest declarations were made by respondents from the Sądecki subregion – 28.9%, as well as young people aged 18-24.

Almost 85.0% of respondents declare that in the last two years they performed basic tests (including blood or urine tests, ultrasound examination). Over 3/4 of them underwent a blood pressure test, and what is significant, hypertension is indicated as one of the most common complaints among the inhabitants of Małopolska (1/4 of respondents). As for women-dedicated tests, over 68.0% of female in Małopolska admit that they have had cytological tests in the last two years, 65.4% have had a gynecological ultrasound scan, but only 44.1% have indicated that they were doing a breast ultrasound or mammography at that time . The situation is slightly worse among male because in the last two years prostate tests were performed by less than 1/4 of male respondents.

Picture 1. Factors which determining the most a health condition of the population in Małopolska Region


There’s a deficit of clean air

According to independent data, polluted air increases the risk of many diseases, including respiratory and circulatory systems. Małopolska’s residents also pay attention to the fact that the external environment (e.g. air quality, working conditions) can significantly affect health. Meanwhile, despite many efforts directed at environmentally friendly solutions, Małopolska Region is still struggling with the problem of polluted air. As many as 60.0% of the Małopolska respondents assess the degree of air pollution in their place of residence as “very high” or “high”. The inhabitants of Krakow pay special attention to this problem, as up to half of them think that their place of residence has “very high” air pollution. The inhabitants of the Nowy Targ subregion have a different opinion, only 4.4% think that the air condition is bad.

Chart 1. Assessment of the level of air pollution at the place of residence in Małopolska Region


Active on the Internet

Małopolska Region is one of the richest and most culturally diverse regions in Europe, and Krakow itself boasts several million exhibits in its museums. The preservation of all kinds of cultural goods in digital format has become possible thanks to the digitization process. The inhabitants of Małopolska know that there is an electronic, digitized form of culture, and the inhabitants of Krakow demonstrate the greatest knowledge in this area – 77.4%. The most popular are the so-called contemporary works (e.g. e-books, films, TV programs) available via the Internet – 60.6%. The second position is taken by library resources (e.g. books, old prints, manuscripts, maps, notes) – 38.6%.

As regards the use of social media, as many as 86.4% of respondents declared that they had an account on at least one website. Facebook is the most popular social website among Małopolska inhabitants (69.3%). In the case of the three websites most frequently indicated by respondents, i.e. Facebook, Instagram and Nasza-Klasa, the main motive for having an account is “keeping in touch with friends, groups of friends”.

Chart 2. A state of knowledge among Małopolska’s inhabitants about the possibilities of using digital resources of culture and their age


Social economy – what is that?

Social economy through the eyes of Małopolska residents is a chapter devoted to knowledge about this sector of the economy where all projects are oriented on social utility. From a formal point of view, the social economy is usually associated with activities on the border of the private and public sectors. Inhabitants of the region are most often associated with local development and “entrepreneurship” (37.5% and 27.8%). Almost 60.0% of respondents have never met the offer of social enterprises. About 1/5 of responses concerned the answer “yes – in the media (Internet, TV, press, etc.)”. According to the data, the youngest respondents (i.e. 18-24 years) are the age group that most often meets the offer of social enterprises. Interestingly, the offer of social enterprises is the least frequently encountered by the inhabitants of the city of Krakow – 67.6%.

The survey of the inhabitants of Małopolska has been conducted since 2012, and one of its goals is to present the diversity of opinions of the inhabitants of Małopolska in relation to their place of residence in individual subregions of the region. Such analysis is a hint to identify the key challenges facing development policy in territorial cross-section. The study involved residents of all six Małopolska’s subregions, and a total of 3002 computer-assisted telephone interviews were conducted. At least 500 respondents participated in the study in each of the territorial areas.

Source of charts and maps in the article: own study based on research results.

Read the report in Polish language