Afghanistan is at an important moment in its history. Despite a persistent insurgency that continues to control and destabilize roughly half of the country, high levels of voter enthusiasm in the recent parliamentary elections demonstrated that the people of Afghanistan remain invested in the future of their democracy. Amid a renewed focus on political reconciliation and the upcoming presidential elections in April, citizens face important choices about Afghanistan’s future stability and prosperity. 

These and other pressing issues facing Afghanistan are the subject of The Asia Foundation’s 2018 Survey of the Afghan People. Please join The Asia Foundation and the U.S. Institute of Peace on Tuesday, December 4, for a presentation on the key findings, and a panel discussion on the trends and shifts in the views of Afghan citizens from past years. Join the conversation on Twitter with #AfghanSurvey.

The annual survey is based on face-to-face interviews with a nationally representative sample of more than 15,000 citizens across all 34 Afghan provinces. The results reveal citizens’ views on a wide range of crucial issues, including security, the economy, corruption, justice, youth issues, reconciliation with the Taliban, access to media, the role of women, governance and political participation. This year’s survey also includes new questions related to local security, access to government services, and elections. 

First commissioned in 2004, the survey provides an unmatched barometer of Afghan public opinion over time and a unique resource for policymakers and the international community, the Afghan government, and the broader public in Afghanistan.

Speakers

Nancy Lindborg, welcoming remarks
President, U.S Institute of Peace

Scott Worden, moderator
Director, Afghanistan and Central Asia Programs, U.S. Institute of Peace

Tabasum Akseer
Director of Policy & Research in Afghanistan, The Asia Foundation 

Amb. Daniel F. Feldman
Former Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan (SRAP) at the U.S. Department of State; Asia Foundation Trustee; and Partner, Akin Gump

Abdullah Ahmadzai
Country Representative in Afghanistan, The Asia Foundation 

Related Publications

What Can Make Displaced People More Vulnerable to Extremism?

What Can Make Displaced People More Vulnerable to Extremism?

Thursday, March 14, 2019

By: Belquis Ahmadi; Rahmatullah Amiri; Sadaf Lakhani

As the international community works to prevent new generations of radicalization in war-torn regions, debate focuses often on the problem of people uprooted from their homes—a population that has reached a record high of 68.5 million people. Public discussion in Europe, the United States and elsewhere includes the notion that displaced peoples are at high risk of being radicalized by extremist groups such as ISIS. Scholars and peacebuilding practitioners have rightly warned against such generalizations, underscoring the need to learn which situations may make uprooted people vulnerable to radicalization. A new USIP study from Afghanistan notes the importance of specific conditions faced by displaced people—and it offers indications suggesting the importance for policy of supporting early interventions to stabilize the living conditions of displaced people after they return home.

Violent Extremism

Afghanistan Talks: No Women, No Peace

Afghanistan Talks: No Women, No Peace

Friday, March 1, 2019

By: Belquis Ahmadi

As talks between the U.S. and the Taliban raise hopes for peace in Afghanistan, the country’s women fear another—and related—possibility: That their hard-won rights to participate in the nation’s political and economic life could again be washed away by the Taliban’s rigid views on gender.

Gender; Peace Processes

Intra-Afghan Peace Negotiations: How Might They Work

Intra-Afghan Peace Negotiations: How Might They Work

Friday, February 22, 2019

By: Sean Kane

Recent positive developments in the Afghan peace process have renewed hopes that the country’s 17-year-old conflict could come to a close. Direct negotiations between the Afghan government and the Taliban, however, are likely to involve complex constitutional questions. This Special Report provides...

Peace Processes

Can Technology Help Afghanistan Avoid the Resource Curse?

Can Technology Help Afghanistan Avoid the Resource Curse?

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

By: William Byrd; Richard Brittan

Afghanistan’s mineral wealth, roughly estimated at upwards of $1 trillion, is sometimes seen as the country’s potential savior—with prospects to generate large government revenues, exports, and some jobs. On the other hand, international and Afghan experience amply demonstrates the downside risks associated with mineral exploitation—macroeconomic and fiscal distortions; waste, corruption, and poor governance; environmental degradation; and the risk of financing or fomenting violent conflict, thereby undermining peacebuilding. The so-called “resource curse” is not destiny, however, and some countries have managed to avoid it, though Afghanistan faces much greater challenges than most when it comes to beneficially developing its mining sector.

Economics & Environment

View All Publications