October 14, 2019

MANILA – The National Economic and Development Authority said that identifying the Filipino culture and common values is essential in creating well-targeted plans and effective policies that can bring about positive changes in the country.

Earlier this year, NEDA commissioned a National Values Survey, a nationwide study covering 10,200 respondents aged 18 and above. The survey aims to understand the cultural values that characterize Philippine society and provide a basis for monitoring the country’s progress in terms of values formation towards national development.

“There has been a notion that Filipinos are culturally diverse and that it is difficult to determine what really makes us Filipino. This survey now shows us what distinguishes Filipinos from other nationalities based on common values,” said Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto M. Pernia.

The survey shows that Filipinos are generally proud of being a Filipino and are quite traditional, religious, and trusting of others irrespective of their sexuality and religion. The survey’s initial results also indicate that the Philippines is a relatively conformist and interdependent society.

“The survey results provide insights on specific Filipino cultural values that have potential effect on national development and the role they play in shaping public policy,” Pernia added.

“That we are a relatively conformist society may hinder efforts at spurring innovation and change. This a challenge we need to overcome,” Pernia said.

The Cabinet official added that the survey provides new knowledge that the government can make use of in positively influencing people’s attitudes and behavior towards building a high-trust society. It will guide government in determining the types of interventions that should be undertaken to empower Filipinos to live the life they want, as embodied in the country’s long-term vision called Ambisyon Natin 2040, which is also based on a national survey.

“We need to initiate cultural change and promote those positive values that will allow us to achieve our goals and realize our AmBisyon of creating a highly-innovative and high-trust society,” he proposed.

Following the completion of the survey, NEDA organized special learning sessions on the results of the survey for officials and representatives of agencies that contribute to the goals and strategies of the Philippine Development Plan’s chapter on promoting culture and values.

Conducted by Hofstede Insights Inc. the study employed the renowned Dimensional Model for analyzing cultural differences. Developed for the Philippines, the model gauges Filipino culture and values, and identifies its key dimensions. The survey was done over a two-year period and the final report is expected to be completed by the end of October.