In many developing countries, lack of adequate information means that government policy-makers are often unable to ascertain public opinion on important economic, social, or legislative issues. Nigeria provides a case in point. With a population of 140 million and a decentralized government structure of 36 states, a federal capital territory, and 774 local governments, a major challenge exists in ensuring good governance at different tiers of the Nigerian government. To address this knowledge gap, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala founded NOI Polls and partnered with the Gallup Organization to conduct a major opinion poll in Nigeria.
On July 26, Dr. Okonjo-Iweala, distinguished fellow at Brookings, discussed some of the results of the first NOI/Gallup poll conducted in February 2007. This initial survey examined topical issues such as the best form of government in Nigeria, the level of confidence in government institutions, and the Niger Delta. Dr. Okonjo-Iweala discussed major lessons learned from this initial survey and additional issues to be examined in future opinion polls in Nigeria. Charles Griffin, a Senior Fellow at Brookings, introduced and moderated the discussion.