An issue is a matter of public importance that needs to be addressed. It can be a political or legal matter, such as a case on the Supreme Court’s docket. It can also be a topic for debate, such as a controversial policy.
Some global issues include child malnutrition, lack of clean water and air pollution. Other issues can be more local in nature, such as crime and gang violence, drug use, and poverty. These issues are often interrelated and can be difficult to tackle separately. Identifying the root cause of a problem can help identify ways to address it.
A large share of the public identifies several of these concerns as very important problems. However, there are significant partisan differences in opinions about the seriousness of some of these issues. For example, Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents are far more likely than Republicans and GOP leaners to say that climate change and economic inequality are very big problems.
The public also expresses concern about several other social issues. For example, nearly four in five say sexism is a very big problem. A similar share says jobs and the economy are very big problems.
Another major problem is corruption. It is a barrier to tackling many global issues, including poverty, climate change, healthcare and gender equality. Combating corruption requires reform, increased accountability and open processes.