GESIS - DBK - ZA6745

ZA6745: Self-employed

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  • ZA6745_v1-0-0.csv (Dataset) 2 MBytes
  • ZA6745_v1-0-0.dta (Dataset Stata) 344 KBytes
  • ZA6745_v1-0-0.sav (Dataset SPSS) 255 KBytes


  • ZA6745_fb.pdf (Questionnaire) 136 KBytes

Other Documents

  • ZA6745_b.pdf (Report) 288 KBytes
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Bibliographic Citation

Citation Citation Presse- und Informationsamt der Bundesregierung (2020): Self-employed. GESIS Data Archive, Cologne. ZA6745 Data file Version 1.0.0,
Study No.ZA6745
Current Version1.0.0, 2020-7-1,
Date of Collection21.10.2019 - 31.10.2019
Principal Investigator/ Authoring Entity, Institution
  • Presse- und Informationsamt der Bundesregierung


AbstractSelf-employed persons were interviewed about their general living conditions, their attitudes towards self-employment, opportunities and problems in starting a business, measures to promote self-employment and their political and social attitudes. Topics: 1. Professional situation: gainful employment; current profession; general life satisfaction; assessment of the current own economic situation; number of employees; weekly working hours; branch of industry; professional activity; business start-up. 2. Attitude towards self-employment: motivation to become self-employed (e.g. self-determined work, flexible working hours, new challenges, etc.); willingness to become self-employed again; advantages of self-employment in comparison (ranking, e.g. working on one´s own responsibility, lower tax payments, etc.); disadvantages of self-employment in comparison (ranking); planned termination of self-employment within the next five years; reasons for termination of self-employment (ranking, e.g. excessive bureaucratic effort, fluctuating income, etc.); potential worries (too little time for family and friends, non-paying customers, financial risk in general, taxes, business idea not successful, customer acquisition, time management, personal Further Education, digitisation in the industry, company succession, economic development); assessment of own social security in case of illness, income in old age, in case of unemployment and in case of need of care; forms of old-age provision (private pension insurance, capital investments, real estate, payment into the statutory pension insurance, sale of the company, other, not at all). 3. Opportunities and problems when starting up a business: evaluation of the current conditions for business start-ups in Germany; challenges in setting up a business (ranking, e.g. financing problems, assessment of entrepreneurial risk, bureaucratic effort, etc.); financing of the business start-up (e.g. through own capital, federal subsidies, etc.). 4. Self-employment and support measures: awareness of advisory and promotional measures of the Federal Government to support the self-employed (open); awareness of various political measures for the self-employed (reduction of the minimum contribution for the statutory health insurance, introduction of a duty to provide for old age, relief in the VAT registration, introduction of a ´Gründerzeit´ for employees, support for parents in the start-up period); Evaluation of these instruments of support; type of advisory services used (advice on setting up a business, tax advice, advice on private pension provision, legal advice, IT advice, management advice, other advice); desired further measures of advice and support (open). 5. Political and social attitudes: justice in Germany; assessment of the current economic situation in Germany; expected change in the economic situation in the next two years; political interest; satisfaction with democracy (split response guidelines); democracy as a good form of government; preferred form of government (strong vs. liberal state); self-perception of the self-employed (in Germany the self-employed receive too little recognition, politics takes the concerns of the self-employed seriously, Germany is a business-friendly country); attitude towards the state and society based on opposing positions (scale of 7: state should guarantee comprehensive social security for its citizens vs. free economy, state should support people in emergency situations through no fault of their own for a certain period of time vs. create a balance between rich and poor, economy must make profits vs. benefit the common good, right of the state to restrict the freedom of citizens to protect them from crime vs. protection of the freedom of citizens from state intervention, preferred social system: strong political leadership vs. democratic citizen participation, performance principle vs. solidarity principle, education policy as equal opportunity vs. promotion of elites, dependence of social progress on origin and property vs. performance, lower taxes and contributions vs. more welfare state benefits); satisfaction with the work of the federal government; party sympathy. Demography: age; sex; federal state; school education: highest general school leaving certificate; vocational training: type of vocational training qualification; self-assessment of social class; gross annual turnover (grouped); size of town; migration background; size of household. Additionally coded: ID; weighting factor.
Categories Categories
  • Political Attitudes and Behavior
  • Economic Policy, National Economic Situation
  • Social Policy
  • Occupation, Profession
  • Income
Topics Topics
  • 1.1 Working conditions
  • 1.5 Employment
  • 11.5 Mass political behaviour, attitudes/opinion
  • 14 Social welfare policy and systems
  • 17.4 Economic conditions and indicators
  • 17.5 Economic policy


Geographic Coverage
  • Germany (DE)
UniverseGerman-speaking population over 18 years of age who are self-employed or freelance in their main occupation or run a company as owner.
Analysis Unit Analysis Unit
  • Individual
Sampling Procedure Sampling Procedure
  • Non-probability: Quota
Quota sample from access panel recruited offline
Mode of Collection Mode of Collection
  • Self-administered questionnaire: Web-based (CAWI)
Time Method Time Method
  • Cross-section
Kind of Data Kind of Data
  • Numeric
Data CollectorKantar Public Division, Berlin
Date of Collection
  • 21.10.2019 - 31.10.2019

Errata & Versions

VersionDate, Name, DOI
1.0.0 (current version)2020-7-1 first archive edition
Errata in current version
Version changes

Further Remarks

NotesThe study was commissioned by the Federal Press Office.
Number of Units: 883
Number of Variables: 171
Data Type: SPSS
Analysis System(s): SPSS, Stata, CSV


Relevant full texts
from SSOAR (automatically assigned)


Research Data Centre
  • Surveys commissioned by the Press and Information Office of the Federal Government
    The ´Press and Information Office of the Federal Government´ (Presse- und Informationsamt der Bundesregierung) infoms citizens and media about the work of the federal government. Above all the office informs the federal government of the news in Germany and worldwide and explores the public opinion.