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Asia in the Eyes of Europe

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Asia in the Eyes of Europe is a research project that examines European public, media, and opinion leaders’ perceptions of Asia. The project has evolved from the ongoing ASEF initiative, “The EU through the Eyes of Asia” which examined the perceptions of the EU across Asia and is currently underway in ten Asian ASEM members.

The two-year research project took place in a sample of eight EU member states (Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Romania, UK) and examines perceptions in three key areas:

– Public opinion: Public opinion surveys were carried out in each location with over 6,000 respondents in total across all locations.

– Media analysis: The research looked at three media outlets in each location: a national reputable newspaper with the highest readership, a national popular newspaper, and the most popular TV news broadcast. The research included tracking news from media outlets such as Euronews and European Voice.

– Opinion leader interviews: The interviews assessed the perceptions of Asia amongst European opinion leaders, adding to the validity and the scope of the data collected. The interviewees were drawn from the media sector (e.g. foreign correspondents, editors) to better understand how news media perceive and present ‘Asia’ in European press.

The project offers unique insights into how ‘Asia’ is framed in European media and the attitudes of European citizens towards ‘Asia’. The depth and quality of the data not only offers insights into public diplomacy efforts for policy makers in both regions but provides insights into place branding for private sector entities. The findings of the research are combined into an overall publication, “Asia in the Eyes of Europe – Images of a Rising Giant”, released in June 2012.

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