Creating people's geographies
Israel Today | 22 Nov 2006
As if Israel’s position in the world in not bad enough, a new survey published in the US Wednesday says that Israel is suffering from the worst public image among all countries of the world.The study, called the National Brands Index, conducted by government advisor Simon Anholt and powered by global market intelligence solutions provider GMI (Global Market Insite, Inc.), shows that Israel is at the bottom of the list by a considerable margin in the public’s perception of its image.
The Index surveyed 25,903 online consumers across 35 countries about their perceptions of those countries across six areas of national competence: Investment and Immigration, Exports, Culture and Heritage, People, Governance and Tourism. The NBI is the first analytical ranking of the world’s nation brands.
“Israel’s brand is by a considerable margin the most negative we have ever measured in the NBI, and comes at the bottom of the ranking on almost every question,” states report author Simon Anholt.
Anholt believes that the politics of a nation can affect every single aspect of a person’s perception about a country. In the light of the recent announcement that the Israeli Foreign Ministry has taken upon itself to re-brand Israel, Anholt comments that to succeed in permanently changing the country’s image, the country has to be prepared to change its behavior. He reiterates his strong belief that a reputation cannot be constructed: it has to be earned.
“If Israel’s intention is to promote itself as a desirable place to live and invest in, the challenge appears to be a steep one,” Anholt concluded.
The survey also indicated that Israel came last in each area by a long margin, including the fact that of the 36 countries ranked, there is nowhere that respondents would like to visit less than Israel. Worse yet, the survey indicates that Israel’s people were also voted the most unwelcoming in the world.
And there was one more unpleasant surprise: Whoever thought that the United States is Israel’s best friend and Israel is loved in the US, the index indicated that Americans ranked Israel just slightly above China in terms of its conduct in the areas of international peace and security.
The 35 countries polled for the study were: Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Estonia, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, UK, and the USA.