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Chung-Li Wu, Assistant Professor of Political Science, National Chung Cheng University.
Ching-Ping Tang, Assistant Professor of Political Science, National Chung Cheng University.
Chi Huang, Professor of Political Science, National Chung Cheng University.
A Pilot Study on Measuring the Sense of Political Efficacy in Taiwan (in Chinese) Download
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The concept of political efficacy has played significant roles in various theories of political attitude and behavior. This paper first briefly reviews its historical development and then concentrates on its operationalization and measurement in survey questionnaires. Recognizing the importance of standardization, we faithfully translate into Chinese the three questions initially composed by the National Election Studies (NES). These translated questions are then applied to a telephone interview in Chia-Yi, Taiwan, conducted in early December of 1998. Our analysis indicates that these three Chinese-version items also reveal internal as well as external dimensions of political efficacy, a finding that coincides well with the existing literature. We therefore conclude that the three standardized questions may be applied in surveys of wider context. Undoubtedly, there are still certain linguistic ambiguities in question-wording translation. We suggest some possible solutions in future studies.