The Perils of

Ipsos has been running studies on the Perils of Perception, exploring the gap between people’s perceptions and the reality since 2012 across the world. This site includes the full results from all the work we’ve undertaken in this area, across 40 countries with around one hundred thousand interviews.
This unique analysis of misperceptions examines why people around the world are so wrong about basic facts about their population and covers everything from our guesses at obesity levels, immigrant numbers, trends in crime and terrorism, how much we need in a pension pot, the sex lives of young people - and our misperceptions around Brexit, Trump and Facebook.

The perils of perception: Why we’re wrong about nearly everything

‘A superb and timely analysis of a genuine and growing threat to democratic debate.’  
Alastair Campbell – author and former Downing Street Press Secretary  
‘A masterful overview of how our perceptions are repeatedly off the mark. Consequential and timely.’
David Halpern – Chief Executive of the Behavioural Insights Team
  ‘Simply indispensable. Marrying fascinating data with superb analysis.’
  Matthew d'Ancona – author of Post-Truth and Editor-in-Chief, Drugstore Culture
  ‘A tour-de-force. Required reading for all engaged citizens of the world.’
  Dame Louise Casey – former senior British government official and former Deputy Director of Shelter
Perils of Perception Book
The book
Bobby Duffy has written a book on how wrong we are, why and what we can do about it.
More about the book

Perils of Perception 2017 Slides
View the slides & event video
The slide deck and event video picks out some of the key findings from across all years of the studies, and explains the main reasons why we’re so often so wrong.
Go to the slides

Perils of Perception 2017 Quiz
Take the quiz
In our latest work we explore perceptions and reality about sexual behaviour in Great Britain and the US. Take the quiz and compare your knowledge and accuracy to others in the Ipsos Perils of Perception Quiz.
Go to the quiz

Perils of Perception 2017 Archive
Visit the archive
We’ve been conducting work on public misperceptions for several years now. From military facts to personal finances we have a wealth of fascinating data which you can explore here.
Go to the archive