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Allgemeine Bevölkerungs­umfrage
der Sozial­wissenschaften

ALLBUS 1988 (ZA No. 1670)


Data Collection Period:

  • April 1988 to July 1988

Scientific Council:

  • Karl Ulrich Mayer, Max Planck Institute for Educational Research, Berlin;
  • Walter Müller, University of Mannheim;
  • Franz Urban Pappi, University of Kiel;
  • Erwin K. Scheuch, University of Cologne;
  • Rolf Ziegler, University of Munich

Data Collector:

  • GFM-GETAS, Hamburg


Social monitoring of trends in attitudes, behavior, and societal change in the Federal Republic of Germany. The main topics in 1988 are:

  1. Attitudes towards marriage, family, and partnership
  2. Attitudes towards and contacts with foreign guest-workers (Gastarbeiter)
  3. Perception of environmental pollution
  4. Political participation
  5. Attitudes towards the political system
  6. National pride
  7. Political attitudes
  8. Questions on AIDS (HIV)
  9. ALLBUS-Demography
  10. Data on the interview (paradata)
  11. Family and changing gender roles I (ISSP 1988)
  12. Added value


  1. Attitudes towards marriage, family, and partnership: family as a prerequisite for happiness; marriage in case of steady partnership; importance of the family; arrangement of duties in the household.
  2. Attitudes towards and contacts with foreign guest-workers (Gastarbeiter): scale of attitudes towards foreigners; contacts with guest-workers within the family, at work, in the neighborhood, or among friends.
  3. Perception of environmental pollution: estimation of personal and overall hazard through lead content of petrol, industrial sewage, industrial fumes, nuclear power plants, traffic noise, and exhaust fumes.
  4. Political participation: frequency of various political activities; personal participation or willingness to participate in selected forms of protest; preferred form of political participation; respondent's eligibility to vote and participation in federal elections or state elections (Landtagswahl); self-assessment of political competence.
  5. Attitudes towards the political system: satisfaction with life in the Federal Republic; feeling of political effectiveness and representation by politicians; legitimacy of social inequality; various attitudes towards democracy; satisfaction with democracy and opinion on the performance of the German political system (political support).
  6. National pride: pride in German institutions and achievements.
  7. Political attitudes: attitude towards social differences in the Federal Republic; political interest; postmaterialism (importance of law and order, fighting rising prices, free expression of opinions, and influence on governmental decisions); self-placement on a left-right continuum; attitude towards extremists as teachers; attitude towards the death penalty for terrorists and murderers of children; self-assessment of social class; recall of past vote; party preference of parents during youth of respondent.
  8. Questions on AIDS (HIV): knowledge about the disease AIDS; perceived reports on AIDS in the media; assessment of personal risk of infection regarding selected forms of contact; expected development of cases of death caused by AIDS; opinion on the probability of developing medication against AIDS; attitude towards governmental information and repressive measures; attitude towards higher health insurance fees for those infected with AIDS; attitude towards firing infected employees and towards entry refusal for foreigners infected with AIDS; attitude towards a central registration requirement; concern about personal AIDS infection and infection of family members and friends; personal protective measures and behavioral changes; acquaintance with AIDS-infected people.
  9. ALLBUS-Demography:
    • Details about the respondent: gender; month and year of birth, age; place of residence (federal state, administrative district, size of municipality, Boustedt-type of municipality); religious denomination, frequency of church attendance; voting intention (Sonntagsfrage); currently at school or university, school education, vocational training; employment status; details about current occupation, industrial sector, working hours per week; date of termination of full- or part-time employment; gaps in occupational biography; details about former occupation; length of unemployment; desire for work; principal source of livelihood; respondent's income; age when leaving parental home; marital status; marital biography.
    • Details about respondent's current spouse: age; currently at school or university, school education, vocational training; employment status; employment status; working hours per week; details about current occupation; date of termination of full- or part-time employment.
    • Details about respondent's former spouse: age; school education, vocational training; details about current occupation.
    • Details about respondent's steady partner: length of relationship; common household; distribution of household chores; month and year of birth, age; currently at school or university, school education, vocational training; employment status; details about current and former occupation respectively; working hours per week.
    • Details about respondent's parents: school education and vocational training of father and mother; father's occupation; parents still alive.
    • Description of household: size of household; number of persons older than 17 in household (reduced size of household); children; household income; type of dwelling; telephone.
    • Details about household members: family relation to respondent; gender; month and year of birth, age; marital status.
    • Respondent's current memberships: (Deutscher Gewerkschaftsbund - DGB (German Confederation of Trade Unions), Deutsche Angestelltengewerkschaft - DAG (German Salaried Employees' Trade Union), Christlicher Gewerkschaftsbund - CGB (Christian Federation of Trade Unions), Union Leitender Angestellter - ULA (Association of Executive Staff), Deutscher Beamtenbund - DBB (German Civil Service Federation), Deutscher Bauernverband (German Farmers Association), trade association, Bundesverband der Deutschen Industrie - BDI (Federation of German Industries), association of a liberal profession, other occupational association; choral society, sports club, leisure activity club, local citizens or community club, other social association, association of German expellees or refugees, charitable association, religious/church organization, youth or student organization, political party, citizens' initiative, other club or association).
  10. Data on the interview (paradata): presence of other people during the interview; intervention of other people in the course of the interview; willingness of respondent to cooperate; evaluation of respondent's reliability; length of interview; date of interview; gender of interviewer; age of interviewer.
  11. Family and changing gender roles I (ISSP): attitude towards employment of women; the importance of personal employment; preferred extent of employment of women during different stages of child raising; preferred type of child care for working couples; attitude towards partnership, marriage and wedding; attitude towards single fathers or mothers; attitude towards a right for homosexual couples to get married; ideal number of children and opinion on various family sizes; attitude towards children; opinion on divorce law; preference for divorce or for continuation of a disturbed marriage; employment of mother during childhood of respondent; personal divorces.
    Married respondents were also asked about: previous divorce of present spouse; pre-marital cohabitation with partner and beginning of cohabitation; extent of employment during different phases of child raising.
  12. Added value: International Standard Classification of Occupations (ISCO 1968); occupational prestige (according to Treiman); magnitude prestige (according to Wegener); weights.

Total Population and Sample:

  • Universe sampled: Federal Republic of Germany (including West Berlin)
  • Household sample: Multi-stage random sample (ADM-Mastersample) of private households addressing all individuals with German citizenship who were at least 18 years of age by the day of the interview.

Method of Data Collection:

  • Personal interview with standardized questionnaire (PAPI - Paper and Pencil Interviewing)
  • additional self-completion questionnaire (drop off) for ISSP

Primary Sampling Units / Sample-Points:

  • 630 electoral districts (3 sample nets of 210 electoral districts each taken from the ADM-Mastersample)

Response Rate:

  • 67.7 %

Data Set:

Number of Respondents: 3,052
Number of Variables: 603


  • Braun, Michael, Reiner Trometer and Michael Wiedenbeck 1989:
    Methodenbericht zur "Allgemeinen Bevölkerungsumfrage der Sozialwissenschaften" (ALLBUS) 1988. ZUMA Arbeitsbericht 89/02.
  • Terwey, Michael 2013:
    Oversamples, Units of Analysis, and the Topic of Data Transformation, in: Michael Terwey and Horst Baumann: Variable Report ALLBUS / German General Social Survey Cumulation 1980-2010. Study-No. 4576. Cologne: GESIS, GESIS - Variable Reports; No. 2013/2: x – xvii.

The known literature using ALLBUS-Data is documented in the ALLBUS-Bibliography. This bibliography can be searched online at the GESIS web presence.

Further Notes:

  • A "split questionnaire" was used for questions on political participation. The sequence of the questionnaire was varied due to methodological considerations.
  • A second version of this data set (256 variables) with a shortened demography module is additionally available as ALLBUScompact 1988 (ZA No. 3712).
  • A Digital Object Identifier (DOI) for use in data citations can be found in the GESIS Data Catalogue.