Immigrant German Election Study (IMGES)

Resource Type
Dataset : Survey and aggregate data
  • Goerres, Achim (Institut für Politikwissenschaft, Universität Duisurg-Essen, Duisburg)
  • Spies, Dennis C. (Heinrich-Heine-Universität Düsseldorf)
  • Mayer, Sabrina (DeZIM-Institut, Berlin)
Publication Date
  • infas Institut für angewandte Sozialwissenschaft GmbH, Bonn (Data Collector)
  • Universität Duisurg-Essen (Researcher)
  • Universität Duisurg-Essen (Researcher)
  • ZA:
    • Political Issues
    • Political Attitudes and Behavior
    • Political Parties, Organizations
    • Society, Culture
    • Family
    • Religion and "Weltanschauung"
  • CESSDA Topic Classification:
    • Elections
    • Social behaviour and attitudes
    • Cultural and national identity
    • Politics
    • Political ideology
    • Mass political behaviour, attitudes/opinion
    • Government, political systems and organisation
    • Minorities
    • Religion and values
    • Social stratification and groupings
    • Equality and inequality
  • Abstract

    Within the framework of the Immigrant German Election Study (IMGES), for the first time in Germany exclusively persons with a Turkish migration background or an origin from countries of the former Soviet Union were interviewed about political attitudes and behaviour. One of the main objectives of the study was to investigate whether the voting behaviour of German citizens with a migration background can be explained by established theories of electoral research or whether it is more dependent on migration-specific characteristics. The survey was conducted after the 2017 federal elections and was conducted simultaneously with the post-election survey of the German Longitudinal Election Study (GLES). The project was funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG) between October 2016 and March 2020. Topics: 1. Migration background of the respondent and the partner: Political interest; born in Germany; country of birth; month and year of moving close to Germany; acquisition of German citizenship at birth or later; year of acquisition of German citizenship; previous citizenship; dual citizenship; second citizenship; reason for migration; parents born in Germany, country of birth of father and mother; Year when father and mother moved to Germany; nationality of father and mother; region of origin in Turkey, Russia, Kazakhstan and Ukraine; marital status; living together with a partner; partner born in Germany, country of birth of partner; country of birth of father and mother of partner 2. Germany - political problems, goals, economic situation: currently most important and second most important problem in Germany; most suitable party to solve the problems; most important problem in Germany for one´s own migration group; most suitable party to solve this problem; most important and second most important goal of the Federal Republic of Germany in the next 10 years (Inglehart Index) assessment of the general economic situation in Germany; assessment of the current economic situation of one´s own migration group; turnout in the last Bundestag election; postal vote; election decision Bundestag election (first and second vote); hypothetical turnout and election decision (respondents under 18 years of age); date of election decision; recall Bundestag election 2013: Voter participation and decision (first and second vote). 3. Political orientation and assessment of political actors: Sympathy Scale for the parties CDU, CSU, SPD,FDP, Die Linke, Grüne and AfD; Sympathy Scale for selected top politicians (Angela Merkel, Martin Schulz, Christian Lindner, Sahra Wagenknecht, Dietmar Bartsch, Horst Seehofer, Cem Özdemir, Katrin Göring-Eckardt, Alice Weidel and Alexander Gauland); satisfaction with the performance of the federal government from CDU/CSU and SPD (Scale); left-right classification of the above-mentioned parties; left-right self-classification; satisfaction with democracy; address during the election campaign for the 2017 Bundestag elections; address during the election campaign by which party; address during the election campaign as a migrant; address during the election campaign on German politics by various organisations; assessment of the current own economic situation; state elections Voter turnout at the last state elections in NRW; election receipt at the state elections (first vote and second vote). 4. Political issues: agreement on various statements: demand for a legally established women´s quota for the supervisory boards of large companies, government should take measures to reduce income disparities, registered same-sex partnerships should be given equal status to marriage; too much influence of foreign governments (Turkey or Russia) on politics in Germany; opinion on religious instruction at state schools in Germany; opinion on voting rights in local elections for foreigners living permanently in Germany who do not come from an EU member state; political knowledge First vote/ second vote, 5% hurdle; party positions and own position on the topic of taxes and welfare state benefits (socio-economic dimension); personal importance of the topic of taxes and welfare state benefits (salience socio-economic dimension); party positions and own position on the topic of facilitated or limited opportunities for foreigners to move to Germany (libertarian-authoritarian dimension); personal importance of the topic of opportunities for foreigners to move to Germany; party positions regarding their relationship to the respondent´s country of origin; importance of the relationship of German parties to the country of origin. 5. Religion and affiliation: self-assessment of religiousness; denomination or faith community; frequency of participation in religious meetings; denomination of the partner; social identity: group membership; strongest group membership; important for identity as a German/German (being born in Germany, sharing German values and traditions, being able to speak German, having German ancestors); refusal to marry a person of German origin without a migration background, Syrian origin, Russian-German origin, Turkish origin, Christian faith or Muslim faith 6. Political opinions: attitude towards politics: Voter participation as a civic duty, politicians only represent interests of the rich and powerful, political issues often difficult to understand, strong political leader good for Germany, even if he bends the laws; attitude towards the immigration of different groups of people to Germany (workers from EU countries, workers from non-EU countries, refugees from war zones, politically persecuted refugees, economic refugees); type of political participation in the last 12 months (e.g. establishing contact with a politician, working in a political party or grouping, etc.); supported party; participation in activities of various organisations in the last 12 months (e.g. employers´ organisations, religious/church groups, sports and leisure club, etc.); at least half of the members of the participants of this organisation with a migration background; institutional trust Germany (parliament, judiciary, government, police, political parties, media); general social trust; likelihood of voting for the following parties: CDU, CSU, SPD, Die Linke, Grüne, FDP and AfD; frequency of discussions about politics in the past week; party affiliation; strength of party identification; type of party identification (e.g. party means a lot to me, party in itself means less to me, but it makes the better politics); frequency of visits to the country of origin; direct family members in the country of origin; home ownership in the country of origin; frequency of use of different media for information about the country of origin (German newspapers, German television, Turkish/Russian newspapers or television, newspapers or television of the country of origin); frequency of contact with relatives in the country of origin; political interest in relation to the country of origin; voter participation in the last national election in the country of origin; voting decision in the last election in the country of origin; dual citizens: intended voting decision in parliamentary elections in the country of origin; hypothetical voting decision in parliamentary elections in the country of origin; institutional trust in the country of origin; membership of a foreign party or Donation of money to that party; participation in activities of a foreign party in the last two years; opinion on Turkey´s membership of the EU; participation in a referendum on constitutional reform in Turkey; decision for or against constitutional reform; hypothetical decision concerning that referendum; sympathy scale for politicians of foreign origin (Turkish President Erdogan/Russian President Putin); support or rejection of the Russian Federation´s approach to the integration of Crimea. 7. Discrimination and social network: identity as a member of a group disadvantaged in Germany; reasons for discrimination (e.g. foreign descent, etc.); areas of discrimination (e.g. finding accommodation, etc.) Social trust with regard to one´s own migrant group; composition of circle of friends and colleagues (proportion with migrant background); self-assessment of language skills (German, Turkish, Kurdish, Russian, other language of origin); language mainly used at work, with friends and in the family; frequency of discussions about Turkish/Russian policy with the family; family member present with positive and negative evaluation of the current policy of the Turkish/Russian government; number of family members with positive and negative evaluation. Demography: sex; age (year of birth; household size; age of persons in the household; country of last school attendance (Germany or other country); highest school leaving certificate; years of school attendance abroad; vocational training completed in Germany or in another country; type of vocational training certificate; type of vocational training abroad; current or previous employment; current or previous employment; current or previous occupational status; job title; temporary work; current or previous employment sector; fear of unemployment or loss of business; self-assessment of shift membership; union member in household; net household income (categorised); education and occupation of partner: country of schooling; years of schooling abroad; school-leaving certificate; current or previous employment; current or previous job. Additionally coded: timestamp modules 1 - 15 incoming; timestamp modules 1 - 15 outgoing; sequential number; date of interview (day, month, year); state; sample: subsample after onomastics/ subsample after screening; data collection mode (CAPI or CASI); language of data collection (CAPI German, CASI Turkish, CASI Russian); consent to interview; control questions; willingness to re-interview; PSU: point number; weighting factors; return code; screening questions: origin; German citizenship; end of interview (no consent, no language, screened out); comprehension problems German; CAPI or CASI; transfer self-processing; language setting automatic. Interviewer rating: understanding; language skills of the respondent; problems or disorders during the interview; type of problems or disorders (open).
Temporal Coverage
  • 2017-10-04 / 2017-12-03
Geographic Coverage
  • Germany (DE)
Sampled Universe
German citizens aged 16 and over with a migration background in the first and second generation from the countries of origin Turkey and former Soviet Union (and successor states)
Probability: Multistage
Time Dimension
  • Cross-section
Collection Mode
  • Face-to-face interview: CAPI/CAMI
  • Self-administered questionnaire: Computer-assisted (CASI)
Data and File Information
  • Number of Variables: 473
Goerres, Achim; Spies, Dennis C; Mayer, Sabrina J (2020): Das Wahlverhalten der Deutschen mit Migrationshintergrund, qualitative Phase. (Transcripts of the focus group interviews.)
A - Data and documents are released for academic research and teaching.
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Alternative Identifiers
  • ZA7495 (Type: ZA-No.)
  • Is new version of
    DOI: 10.4232/1.13405
  • Hamidou-Schmidt H., Mayer S.J. (2020) The Relation Between Social Identities and Outgroup Hostility Among German Immigrant‐Origin Citizens. In: Political Psychology. DOI: 10.1111/pops.12700
  • Goerres, A., Mayer, S. J., & Spies, D. C. (2018): Immigrant voters against their will: a focus group analysis of identities, political issues and party allegiances among German resettlers during the 2017 Bundestag election campaign, in: Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 1-18. Online first.
  • Mayer S.J., Hamidou H., Goerres A. (2020) Der Zusammenhang zwischen nicht-politischer Integration und politischer Teilhabe von Bürger/innen mit Migrationshintergrund. In: Pickel G., Decker O., Kailitz S., Röder A., Schulze Wessel J. (eds) Handbuch Integration. Springer VS, Wiesbaden. DOI: 10.1007/978-3-658-21570-5_28-1
  • Spies, D.; Mayer, S.; Goerres, A. (2020): What are we missing? Explaining immigrant-origin voter turnout with standard and immigrant-specific theories. In: Electoral Studies, Volume 65,
  • Mayer, S. J.; Hamidou, H.; Goerres, A. (2020): Der Zusammenhang zwischen nicht-politischer Integration und politischer Teilhabe von Bürger/innen mit Migrationshintergrund: Befunde von der Bundestagswahl 2017 auf Basis der Immigrant German Election Study, In: Handbuch Integration, Hrsg. Pickel, Gert, Decker, Oliver, Kailitz, Steffen; Röder, Antje; Schulze Wessel, Julia, Wiesbaden: Springer.

Update Metadata: 2020-12-17 | Issue Number: 16 | Registration Date: 2020-07-01