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Allgemeine Bevölkerungs­umfrage
der Sozial­wissenschaften

ALLBUS 1996 (ZA No. 2800, German version; ZA No. 3751, English version)

Data Set
German / English

Questionnaire (PDF)
German / Englisch

Methodological Report
(PDF - German only)

Variable Report
German / English

Data Collection Period:

  • March 1996 to June 1996

Data Collector:

  • Infratest Burke, Munich

Data Set:

  • 3518 respondents
  • 436 variables

Scientific Council:

  • Klaus Allerbeck, University of Frankfurt;
  • Jutta Allmendinger, University of Munich;
  • Wilhelm Bürklin, University of Potsdam;
  • Marie Luise Kiefer, University of Vienna;
  • Walter Müller, University of Mannheim;
  • Karl Dieter Opp, University of Leipzig;
  • Erwin K. Scheuch, University of Cologne



Social monitoring of trends in attitudes, behavior, and societal change in the Federal Republic of Germany. The main topics in 1996 are:

  1. Attitudes towards ethnic groups in Germany and to migration
  2. Citizenship and country of origin
  3. Attitudes towards marriage, family, and partnership
  4. Other topics
  5. ALLBUS-Demography
  6. Data on the interview (paradata)
  7. Role of government III (ISSP 1996)
  8. Added value


  1. Attitudes towards ethnic groups in Germany and to migration: perceived consequences of presence of foreigners in Germany; attitude towards the influx of eastern European ethnic Germans, asylum seekers, labor from EC or non-EC countries; ranking in terms of importance of different citizenship requirements; perception and evaluation of discriminatory behavior towards foreigners; opinion on dual citizenship and on equal rights for foreigners; indicators for social distance to ethnic minorities and foreigners; perceived differences in lifestyle; items on anti-Semitism; support for the teaching of Islam in public schools; estimation of proportion of foreigners in East and West Germany; percentage of foreigners in local county (Kreis).
  2. Citizenship and country of origin: first, second, and third citizenship of respondent and of spouse or partner; original citizenship of respondent and of spouse or partner; country of origin of respondent, of respondent's parents and grandparents; length of residence in Germany.
  3. Attitudes towards marriage, family, and partnership: family as a prerequisite for happiness; marriage in case of steady partnership; attitudes towards the role of women in the family; relative importance of selected educational goals for a child.
  4. Other topics: attitudes towards abortion; interpersonal trust and trust in politicians; social pessimism and orientation towards the future (anomia); reasons for being proud to be a German; authoritarianism; self-assessment of social class; fair share in the standard of living; political interest; questions on 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; assessment of economic situations; recall of vote in last federal elections; reasons for non-voting; fear of unemployment or loss of business.
  5. ALLBUS-Demography:
    • Details about the respondent: gender; month and year of birth, age; geographical origin and citizenship; place of residence (federal state, administrative district, size of municipality, BIK-type of municipality) and length of residence; religious denomination, frequency of church attendance; voting intention (Sonntagsfrage); recall of past vote; school education, vocational training; employment status; details about current occupation, affiliation to public service, supervisory functions; length of unemployment; date of termination of full- or part-time employment; details about former occupation; respondent's income; marital status.
    • Details about respondent's current spouse: school education, vocational training; employment status; details about current occupation; current and former citizenships.
    • Details about respondent's steady partner: common household; month and year of birth, age; geographical origin and citizenship; school education, vocational training; employment status; details about current occupation.
    • Details about respondent's parents: parent's and grandparent's country of origin; school education of father and mother; father's occupation.
    • Description of household: size of household; 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), other union, political party).
  6. Data on the interview (paradata): date of interview; time and length of interview; presence of other people during the interview; respondent's willingness to answer questions; evaluation of reliability of respondent answers; gender, age, and school education of the interviewer.
  7. Role of government III (ISSP): attitudes towards the observance of laws; attitudes towards different forms of protest against the government; willingness to participate and actual participation in public protest activities or demonstrations against the government; opinions on freedom of speech for extremists; attitude towards a miscarriage of justice; perceived threats in the private life through governmental data collections and computer networks; assessment of social responsibility of the state in relation to job creation and just distribution of incomes; attitudes towards economically oriented government measures; attitudes towards an increase of expenditures of the government for environmental protection, health service, police, the educational system, defense, pensions, unemployment benefit, culture; assessment of the power of the trade unions, private enterprise and the state; assessment of state responsibility for socio-political tasks (social support for the elderly, students, housing provision, job creation; economic growth through assistance to industry, price stability, etc.); political interest; overall attitude towards politics and the political system (subjective assessment of political influence (political efficacy), level of political awareness, politicians and election promises); lower taxes vs. more extensive social services; assessment of fairness of tax levels for different income groups; attitudes towards privatization or nationalization of selected public institutions; preferences for enactment of environmental regulations by the Federal parliament or the EU.
  8. Added value: Inglehart-Index; family typology, classification of private households (according to Porst and Funk); International Standard Classification of Occupations (ISCO 1968, 1988); class position (according to Goldthorpe); occupational prestige (according to Treiman); magnitude prestige (according to Wegener); occupational metaclassification (according to Terwey); weights.

Total Population and Sample:

  • Universe sampled: Federal Republic of Germany
  • Sample of individuals: Two stage disproportionate random sample in western Germany (incl. West Berlin) and eastern Germany (incl. East Berlin) of all persons (German and non-German) who resided in private households and were born before 1 January 1978. In the first sampling stage, 104 municipalities (Gemeinde) were selected in West Germany and 47 in East Germany with a probability proportional to their total number of adult residents; in the second stage, 40 persons (in five large cities a corresponding multiple thereof) were selected at random from the municipal registers of residents.
    Targeted individuals who did not have adequate knowledge of German to conduct the interview were treated as systematic unit non-responses.

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:

West: 111 Sample-Points (in 104 municipalities)
East: 51 Sample-Points (in 47 municipalities)

Response Rate:

West: 54.2%
East: 54.2%


  • Wasmer, Martina, Achim Koch and Siegfried Gabler 1996:
    Konzeption und Durchführung der "Allgemeinen Bevölkerungsumfrage der Sozialwissenschaften" (ALLBUS) 1996. ZUMA Arbeitsbericht 96/08.
  • 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:

  • Respondents from the area of the new federal states are oversampled so that analysts can obtain a more detailed picture of this portion of the population.
  • A second version of this data set (210 variables) with a shortened demography module is additionally available as ALLBUScompact 1996 (ZA No. 3718).
  • GESIS also provides an English language version of ALLBUS 1996 (ALLBUS/GGSS 1996, ZA No. 3751; ALLBUS/GGSScompact 1996, ZA No. 3752).
  • A Digital Object Identifier (DOI) for use in data citations can be found in the GESIS Data Catalogue.