Real Opinions Blog

Subscribe now!Feeds RSS

About Us

Latest posts

Hot Links


Middle East Opinion on Obama’s first 100 days.


24th April 2009, Dubai
A recent survey by the market research company Real Opinions in the Middle East on the first 100 days since US President Obama was inaugurated shows that although the image of the US and leadership on the global stage has improved, performance on issues closer to home in the Middle East are dividing opinion.

Q. The US President Barack Obama will soon have been in office for 100 days and this is often a time to assess a political leader's progress. Please rate how you believe the following has changed under his leadership.

Yellow pie chart

There is success for Obama with overall opinion of the US from a Middle Eastern perspective improving by 42%. This is backed up with 35% believing the leadership of US on the global stage has also improved while 43% believe there is no change and just 9% believe it is actually worse. There are also encouraging signs on the subject of the economy with more than twice as many than his predecessor believing they are more confident with the global economy recovering under his leadership (37% improved, 15% worse). However, in terms of key issues such as Middle East stability, the opinion is more closely divided with 20% believing it has improved and 14% believing it has become worse.

Dan Healy, the CEO of Real Opinions who conducted the survey commented ‘Breaking some of these results down to the areas directly impacted by recent events such as those in the Palestinian Autonomous Area (PAA), 19% believed Middle East stability has worsened, 17% believe it has improved while just over half believe it has not changed (54%). When it came to the issue of the Palestinian & Israeli situation, 30% in PAA thought this was worse under Obama’s leadership, which is twice as many as those who thought it had improved on 14%. For half of these respondents, they don’t believe there is any change between Presidents Bush and Obama.

Yellow pie chart

Healy added, “The overall acceptance of the image of U.S. has greatly improved but in terms of some key issues in the Middle East there is very little change. I think it’s safe to say that under Bush’s leadership and policies the goodwill and the favourable disposition towards the U.S. in the Middle East eroded away and now it’s a new chapter, like a love affair, rekindled, very much awakened and I think it’s a window of opportunity to leverage this favouritism in terms of policies to tackle some of these issues.”

Research on the eve of the US presidential election showed the Middle East very much in favour of Obama over his then rival McCain in terms of being perceived as the best person capable of handling these key regional issues. Healy added “With the election of Obama, many have raised expectations in the Middle East of a change being made to policies and this appears to be transferring into dissatisfaction for some with the perception of little change being made by the time of this study.”

On the eve of these results being released was the announcement by US officials that leaders of Egypt, Israel and Palestinians have been invited for talks in Washington in a new push for Middle East peace.

Healy commented ‘Overall, these results suggest there is certainly a dramatic and favourable image change for the US in the Middle East with Obama as leader over the last 100 days. In terms of policy on some key Middle Eastern issues, there is certainly room for an improvement and this might be about to change with this invitation for talks.’

Research Methodology
The survey was conducted in both Arabic and English online from 10th to 20th April with n=2,789 respondents in the Middle East. Respondents were from the Real Opinion online panel and the results have approximately a 2%+/- margin of error with a CI of 95%.

About Real Opinions
Real Opinions is a full-service market research company, specialising in online media, with global and Middle East research expertise and best practice. Based in Dubai and London, Real Opinions has proven ability to help strategically guide communication, insight and assess the effectiveness of campaigns.

Real Opinions is an accredited member of ESOMAR, an international organisation for market research. For more information about us and this study, please visit

Click to view tables
Contact Real Opinions for more information:

Do you have any suggestions? Add your comment. Please don't spam!
Subscribe to my feed

Post a Comment