2007 Global Public Opinion Poll on Attitudes Towards Nuclear Weapons

In 2007, The Simons Foundation commissioned a Global Public Opinion Poll to measure public attitudes towards the possession, proliferation and possible use of nuclear weapons. Six thousand randomly selected adults from the U.S., Britain, France, Germany, Italy and Israel were surveyed by the polling firm Angus Reid Strategies in July and August 2007.

  • The survey found that more than 79% of respondents from all six nations felt that nuclear weapons make the world a more dangerous place.
  • The poll also revealed overwhelming support for the worldwide elimination of nuclear weapons or a reduction of arsenals.
  • Large majorities in the six countries polled “strongly agreed” that countries that do not currently have nuclear weapons should be prevented from developing them.
  • The majority of respondents were also "very concerned" over the possibility of nuclear weapons falling into the hands of non-state entities such as militant groups.


Dr Jennifer Allen Simons of The Simons Foundation believes the results came at a critical juncture in the global debate on nuclear weapons.


“The Cold War may be over, but the threat of a nuclear war has escalated," Dr. Simons stated. "We are facing an extremely volatile situation on four fronts: the U.S. and Russia are upgrading the capability of their arsenals; there is a new generation of nuclear countries such as India and Pakistan who have tested their weapons; there are states that aspire to become nuclear powers and there are terrorist groups that want to acquire nuclear weapons. We are entering a nuclear renaissance and citizens are very concerned.”


For this global study, Angus Reid Strategies conducted online surveys among randomly selected, representative samples of adults in six countries.

Britain – 1,000 adults, conducted from July 26 to 29, 2007
France – 1,000 adults, conducted from July 26 to 28, 2007
Italy – 1,000 adults, conducted from July 26 to 27, 2007
Germany – 1,000 adults, conducted from July 26 to 28, 2007
U.S. – 1,000 adults, conducted from July 26 to Aug. 1, 2007
Israel – 1,000 adults, conducted from July 26 to Aug. 8, 2007

The margin of error for the total sample in each country is +/-3.1%, 19 times out of 20. The results have been statistically weighted according to the most current education, age, gender and region census data to ensure a sample representative of the entire adult population of each country. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding.