Press-releases, Publications

January protests

21% of Russians closely followed the recent protests associated with the arrest of Alexey Navalny. 59% more have heard at least something about it. 19% know nothing about the protests. This is the highest figure of awareness about the protests in several years: 75% knew about protests in Khabarovsk, 37% about the protests in Bashkiria, 63% about Moscow protests in 2019, and 61% about the protests of Alexey Navalny’s supporters in 2017.

Do you know about the recent protests…

Respondents aged 18-24 followed the protests most of all age groups– 27%. The respondents disapproving of the President’s activities were more likely to follow the protests (30%), than his supporters (16%).

Do you know about the recent protests associated with Alexey Navalny’s arrest and the release of his investigation?

A negative attitude (39% of respondents) and indifference (37%) prevail with respect to the attitudes towards protesters. 22% of the respondents have a positive attitude to the protesters. Russians had better attitude towards the protesters in Khabarovsk in summer 2020: 47% had positive attitude and only 16% the negative one; or to Moscow protesters in 2019: 23% positively and 25% negatively.

What is your attitude towards people who go to these protests?

Russians aged 18-24 have a much better attitude to the protesters: 38% positive, 22% negative. The worst attitude is observed among respondents aged 55 and older: 16% have positive attitudes and 55% negative.

The data in terms of main information sources shows that the readers of social media and telegram channels have the best attitude (31% and 51% of approval respectively) and TV viewers have the worst (14% approve, 48% disapprove).

The main rationale for participating in the protest is seen in general dissatisfaction with the situation in the country (said about by 43% of respondents), 41% thought so in summer 2019, 18% in summer 2017. 28% more think that the protesters participate in rallies because they are paid for it (this is the highest figure in several years); in summer 2019 11% thought so, only 12% in summer 2017. Only 19% see the motive in the outrage at the facts of corruption demonstrated in the film “Palace for Putin”. 16% think that the protesters were driven by the outrage at Alexey Navalny’s arrest.

Against the backdrop of the recent protests the number of Russians who expect further growth in protest activity has sharply increased; this figure has reached the level of 1998 – 43% of Russians think of possibility of new protests with economic demands, 45% think of possible political protests. At the same time, the number of people ready to participate in the protests is small: 17% for protests with economic demands and 15% for political protests. In November 2020 these figures were 23% and 19% respectively.

This survey was conducted January 29 – February 2, 2021, among a representative sample of all Russian urban and rural residents. The sample was comprised of 1616 people aged 18 or older in 137 municipalities of 50 regions of the Russian Federation. The survey was conducted as a personal interview in respondents’ homes. The answer distribution is presented as percentages of the total number of participants along with data from previous surveys.

The statistical error of these studies for a sample of 1600 people (with a probability of 0.95) does not exceed:

3.4% for indicators around 50%

2.9% for indicators around 25%/75%

2.0% for indicators around 10%/90%

1.5% for indicators around 5%/95%

The ANO Levada Center has been included in the registry of non-commercial organizations acting as foreign agents. Read the Director of the Levada Center’s statement of disagreement with this decision here.


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