The latest trends in culture and society from The Harris Poll 

Our America, This Week survey, fielded November 11th to 13th, 2022, among 1,980 U.S. adults, finds Americans still concerned over the economy (86%) and bracing for continued inflation of groceries (76%), utility bills (71%), interest rates (69%), and gas (68%). Overall, nearly three-quarters (74%) still believe the worst of inflation is yet to come.

Here’s what else you need to know this week:

  • In partnership with U.S. News & Global Report, we document the systematic barriers preventing financial equity for all Americans which is being presented today by Harris Poll CEO John Gerzema at the U.S. News & World Report inaugural “The State of Equity in America” forum
  • We then detail Gen Z’s skepticism about listed salaries on job postings with Fortune
  • The continued interest – but wariness – of the future of crypto, especially among voters covered by Forbes and World Economic Forum.
  • And lastly, the importance of value alignment in talent retention is described in Forbes

To hear about these stories and more, check out our America This Week: From The Harris Poll podcast on Spotify and Apple Podcasts, where our CEO John Gerzema and CSO Libby Rodney dive into the numbers. For any polling ideas, reach out to [email protected].   

Lastly, check out the America This Week monthly summary slide deck and tabs for more insights into inflation and the state of America. Download the latest report here

As America Aims for Equity, Many Believe Systemic Racism Doesn’t Exist: U.S. News-Harris Poll

Despite the disproportionate toll the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic fallout have had on communities of color, 4 in 10 Americans  (41%) are unconvinced that systemic racism exists in the U.S., according to a new survey in partnership with U.S. News & World Report (and presented at their inaugural “The State of Equity in America” forum).

  • Nearly a quarter (24%) of Americans say they did not believe there is systemic racism in America, while another (17%) said they were unsure, with more white Americans remaining unconvinced:

  • Differences in opinions among racial and ethnic groups regarding addressing disparities: Among Black respondents, (80%) agree that systemic racism is responsible for inequalities in areas such as health and finances, compared to only (62%) of whites. 
  • Additionally, more Black Americans report strongly agreeing that it’s essential for society to address the impacts of discriminatory practices that disadvantage some Americans, compared to just over a third of whites (36%):

  • Two-thirds of respondents disagreed with the notion that wage gaps are not a problem in the U.S., Black respondents were significantly more likely to strongly disagree (43% v. white: 32%). 
  • Similarly, over 4 in 10 (43%) Black Americans strongly disagree that workplace discrimination is not a problem, compared to just a quarter (27%) of white Americans. 
  • While Americans are equally split on whether businesses or government would be most likely to make a positive impact in advancing equity, they are less likely to be trusted to make meaningful changes compared to small businesses, nonprofits, and educational/health entities:

Takeaway: The finding that struck us the most was that while (53%) of white Americans believe systemic racism exists, only (36%) strongly agree that it’s essential for society to address the impacts of discriminatory practices. That’s a 17 percentage points gap between acknowledgment and action. And it speaks to the malaise in wanting to manage social systems that Jennifer-Jones Austin described this morning as “willful, structural economic deprivation.” 

Gen Z Skeptic Over Salary Postings: Fortune-Harris Poll

Advocates for pay transparency (which New York City adopted this month) argue that posting salary ranges for jobs helps close gender and racial pay gaps and provides a better foundation for younger and future workers. However, according to our latest collaboration with Fortune, younger workers may not care about these rules.

  • Two-thirds (66%) of Gen Z support states and cities requiring companies to include salary ranges in their job postings, but it’s far less than older generations (Millennials: 82%, Gen X: 88%, Boomers: 85%).
  • Gen Z employees were also more skeptical that providing salary ranges and benefit packages would create competition between companies for talent and give more negotiating power to candidates:

  • Their skepticism is bolstered by nearly 6 in 10 Gen Z Americans (58%) agreeing that companies won’t include realistic salary ranges in their job postings – something some companies have already been accused of doing. 

Takeaway: Gen Z has demonstrated that they are comfortable sharing information on social media platforms related to salaries — much more so than older generations. “Gen Z doesn’t need regulations to require companies to comply with pay transparency,” Janet Lenaghan, dean of Hofstra University’s Frank G. Zarb School of Business, tells Fortune. “They willingly share such data on their own and do so with much more precision than the broad salary ranges companies often provide when mandated to disclose” (Fortune).

The Future Crypto Takeover: Grayscale-Harris Poll

Our latest survey in partnership with Grayscale, as covered by Forbes and World Economic Forum, found that beyond the usual economy, inflation, and crime midterm concerns, the topic of cryptocurrency is becoming increasingly salient with the electorate, especially as over a third of registered voters aged 18 to 34 currently own crypto (37%).

  • More than half of Americans (53%) agree that “cryptocurrencies are the future of finance,” a sentiment that even crosses partisan lines (Democrats: 59%, Republicans: 51%). 
  • In part, nearly 6 in 10 say that innovations in finance that rely less on banks and financial intermediaries will create a more equitable economy by allowing more people to access the global financial system. 
  • However, nearly 4 in 5 (79%) believe there needs to be more precise regulation of the cryptocurrency market, with again slightly higher support from Democrats (87% v. Republicans: 76%). 
  • A similar number (77%) also want the federal government to establish clear rules for cryptocurrency trading (Democrats: 83%, Republicans: 75%).

Takeaway: “Crypto presents a rare opportunity to bring voters together in support of bipartisan legislation that will benefit American investors across the board – from those who are unbanked and using crypto to access the global financial system to those who seek to have crypto in their retirement accounts” (World Economic Forum).

Company Values Must Match Employee Values: Integral-Harris Poll

Company leaders have little control over local, national, or world events, yet, organizations have significant systemic influences on their employees. So, in partnership with Integral, as published by in Forbes, we sought to examine the relationship between personal and company values and the positive impact of alignment.

  • The impact of employee values: Employees who feel their organization reflects their values describe a company culture in which their peers are much more likely to exhibit positive behaviors, such as going the extra mile or mentoring (83%, 78%):

  • The perils of misalignment: When employees believe their employer’s values differ, they are more likely to think that their peers may quit (28%) or even harm the company, such as posting negative reviews online (23%). 
  • Alignment can boost loyalty: Employee loyalty exceeds 9 in 10 (92%) for employees who believe their organization reflects their values, compared to just 6 in 10 (58%) of those loyal to companies with differing values. 
  • Company action is a must: Most employees want their companies to take positive action on issues that impact both their personal and professional well-being, such as employee health and well-being (40%), job creation (32%), data privacy (23%), income, gender, and racial inequality (21%, 20%, 19%, respectively).

Takeaway: “Employees expect employers to take a stand and take action on issues that matter to them, and they’ll move on to a different employer if there’s a mismatch in values alignment. Be clear about your position on a range of issues, understand what matters deeply to your employees and create a way to knit the two in a meaningful way within your employer brand.” (Forbes).


Download the Data

This survey was conducted online within the U.S. by The Harris Poll from November 11th to November 13th, among a nationally representative sample of 1,980 U.S. adults.

John Gerzema headshot

John Gerzema


Download the Data

This survey was conducted online within the U.S. by The Harris Poll from November 11th to November 13th, among a nationally representative sample of 1,980 U.S. adults.


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