A survey conducted in 24 nations has revealed that almost half of humanity believes in the existence of extraterrestrial life. Not only that, these believers would like to make contact with members of a civilization not of this Earth. The researchers think that this belief helps account for why franchises like Star Wars and Star Trek continues to be a massive cultural phenomenon after being around for nearly half a century.
Independent survey group Glocalities conducted the research and polled 26,492 individuals from 24 countries. Of those asked, 61% believe that there is some form of alien life on other worlds while 17% said they don’t believe that. 22% said they simply don’t know.
In the realm of intelligent alien life more akin to ones encountered on an episode of Star Trek, 47% believe they exist. 26% said no way while 28% shrugged with an “I dunno.” Of the 47% of those who believe intelligent civilizations are out there, 60% of them believe that we should attempt first contact with those civilizations. 21% of them say they would rather not. 19% abstained from a decision.
“The recent discovery of exoplanets is likely to fuel the interest of people in learning about the mysteries of the universe and possible life forms on other planets,” said Glocalities Research Director Martijn Lampert. “If and when the discovery of life on other planets is confirmed by the scientific community in the coming years, it is likely that this group will become more and more engaged in the debate about the future of humanity and the place of planet Earth in the universe.”
Among the nations this survey was done, Russia, Mexico, and China have the most believers in intelligent alien life. Those who live in the Netherlands, Indonesia, and Turkey are less likely to believe in the existence of intelligent alien life.
Glocalities also profiled those who believe in the existence of intelligent alien life and found a few determining traits. These folks tend to be open-minded, tolerant, and maintain an anti-authoritarian outlook. They are heavily interested in the sciences, humanity’s technological development, and politics. Glocalities says that those who believe there are other civilized beings out there in the universe are “holistic thinkers who believe that all things and phenomena are interconnected” and that “they believe that our dreams and imaginations create the reality we live in.”
When it comes to life here on Earth, 25% of those polled believe that it originated in another part of the universe. 39% do not believe this while 36% aren’t sure.
“The high score on the belief in the existence of extraterrestrial life and the typical values profile of believers in intelligent alien civilizations partly explains the immense popularity of space opera movies such as Star Wars,” said Lampert. “The fascination with the mysteries of the universe offers mankind a never-ending story to research, develop and experience.”
Photo Credit: Columbia Pictures