Survey of the Afghan People

Speeches Shim

  • Duration: 
    Oct 2012 – April 2021
  • Value: $7.5 million


USAID seeks to build the capacity of Afghan government, civil society, and university student researchers to conduct annual national-level public opinion research and disseminate the results through The Survey of the Afghan People (SAP) project. Implemented by The Asia Foundation, the annual survey is the longest-running and broadest nationwide survey of Afghan attitudes and opinions. Supported by USAID since 2004, the survey drives substantive policy discourse on issues such as security, governance, rule of law, freedom of speech, economic growth, disability issues, and migration. National and international policy makers, civil society organizations, donors, and journalists use the survey results as a source of information about public attitudes and Afghan views on current social, economic, and political issues.

In 2018, USAID modified the SAP to extend the period of performance by three years and added two new surveys that will start in 2018:

  1. The National Disability Survey of Afghanistan is a one-time survey, which will provide up-to-date disability data to the Government of Afghanistan and donors to assist with program planning and victim assistance.
  2. The Survey of Afghan Returnees is an annual survey to collect information from returnees in Kabul, Herat, Kandahar, Jalalabad, and Balkh from 2018 - 2020. The research questions will focus on returnees’ challenges, job skills, expectations of the government, access to education and healthcare, and economic and housing conditions.


  • Nationwide Public Opinion Survey: Conduct annual surveys using a progressively refined methodology that covers all provinces and includes a sample size of more than 9,500 respondents.
  • Capacity Building for Afghan Researchers: Conduct “Introductory Data Analysis” training for Government of Afghanistan officials and researchers.
  • Develop and publish the first-ever Dari language textbook on statistics and data analysis using Stata Software.
  • The National Disability Survey of Afghanistan: Conduct the survey across all 34 provinces with a sample size of 12,000 households and provide estimates for the national level.
  • The Survey of Afghan Returnees: Interview 8,000 individuals representing 4,000 returnees and 4,000 host community members. This consists of 1,600 samples from both groups in the five provinces of Kabul, Jalalabad, Kandahar, Balkh, and Herat.


  • Now in its fourteenth year, SAP is the longest-running and broadest nationwide public perception survey in Afghanistan.
  • Since 2013, the project trained more than 380 researchers on basic and advanced data analysis skills.
  • Since November 2017, the project distributed more than 1,000 copies of the “2017 Survey of the Afghan People” to national and international stakeholders.
  • In October 2018, the project published two research method and statistics textbooks—Applied Statistics for Policy Analysis and the Introduction to Research Methods. The books will enhance the research knowledge and skills of researchers in government, non-government organizations, and national universities in Afghanistan.

Last updated: November 28, 2018

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