Palestinian Elections and the Declaration of Principles


December 12, 1993

The need to comprehend and assimilate Palestinian attitudes, perception, and priorities is more urgent than ever at this critical and intricate stage of Palestinian history. A serious lack of adequate, credible scientific data has rendered it difficult for academics and policy markers to accurately determine Palestinian concerns and preferences in the socio-economic, political and cultural spheres and subsequently translate them to sound national policy.

With such ideas in mind, the Board of Trustees of CPRS has opted for the establishment of a Survey and Polls Unit (SPU) dedicated to conducting and survey research on pertinent political and social questions. SPU has, so far, conduted four polls. The first poll has focused on Palestinian attitudes towards the Palestinian-Israeli Declaration of Principles (DOP) signed in September 13, 1993. The second and third polls have concentrated on the elections of a Palestinian Legislative Council, as mentioned in the Palestinian-Israeli (DOP).


The following are the results of a public opinion poll that has been conducted in the West Bank and Gaza on the 12th of December, 1993. A random sample was of 1137 Palestinians. over the age of 18 were interviewed. Efforts were made to represent all residential areas (i.e., city, town,village and refugee camp). Age and sex were also considered.

The interviews were conducted on a face-to-face basis in West Bank major towns (Jerusalem, bethlehem, Ramallah, Nablus, Jericho, Tulkarm, Qalqilya and Jenin). Researchers were unable to conduct interviews in Hebron because of the imposed curfew on the city. In Gaza, interviews were conducted in the following areas: Al-Shati', Khan Yunis, Rafah (town and refugee camp), Al-breig refugee camp, Beit Lahia village, Al-Zaytoun, Al-Shuja'iyah, Al-rimal, Qararah village and Jabalya village.

Fifty four well-trained field workers were instructed to visit areas that attract all of the society's groups and strata. These areas included, among others, bus/car stations that lead to village and refugee camps, main markets, city centers. hospital entrances, ..etc.

682 questionnaire were received from the West Bank, and 455 were received from Gaza. The margin of error for this study is plus or minus 3%, with a confidence level of 95%.

CPRS plants to continue its study of Palestinian political attitudes. It will conduct a monthly poll on elections, political agreements, political affiliation, and other important topics.


CPRS researchers are constantly trying to refine and improve the validity of the research methodology and the reliability of the collected data. For these purposes, more female data collectors were hired to ensure the representation of women in the sample. They were instructed to visit public institutions that attract women.

Furthermore, the majority of our data collectors participated in an intensive workshop where the goals of the poll were discussed. They were also lectured on survey methods, scientific research, field work, and sampling. A specialized two-day workshop took place in Gaza on 7-8 December, 1993, to discuss field work and propose solutions to possible problems.

Data collectors worked in groups supervised by qualified researchers made random visits to interviews to stations and discussed the research process with data collectors. All interviews took place on the same day.Data collectors were assigned a limited number of interviews (an average of 30) to allow for careful and intensive interviewing....More