Indonesia's Most Admired

Indonesia's Most Admired

B.J. Habibie remains Indonesia’s most admired man


Former President of Indonesia B.J. Habibie has again topped the list as Indonesia’s most admired man, according to YouGov’s annual study of which public figures people look up to.

Following B.J. Habibie is his successor, recently re-elected President of Indonesia Joko Widodo in second place. Other notable Indonesians in the top ten include Islamic preacher Abdul Somad in third, former governor of Jakarta Basuki Tjahaj Purnama in seventh, and former army lieutenant General Prabowo Subianto.

Technology billionaire entrepreneurs make up a significant part of the list. Microsoft co-founder and philanthropist Bill Gates comes in fourth place, and Alibaba co-founder Jack Ma in sixth.

The top ten list of most admired men is completed with Portuguese football Cristiano Ronaldo in fifth, Hong Kong martial arts actress in ninth and the former United States president Barack Obama in tenth.

Minister of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Susi Pudijastuti is Indonesia’s most admired woman for the second year running. She is followed by TV anchor Najwa Shihab in second place.

In third place is Minister of Finance Sri Mulyani. Singer and actress Agnes Monica completes the list of Indonesians, coming in fourth place.

Entertainers have a strong presence in the top ten. Talk show host Oprah Winfrey comes in fifth place. American singer Taylor Swift is in sixth, and Hollywood actresses Angelina Jolie and Emma Watson in seventh and ninth respectively.

The list is rounded by with Queen Elizabeth II in eighth and former First Lady of the United States Michelle Obama in tenth.

***Results based on 1,076 Indonesians surveyed by YouGov Omnibus



In December YouGov gathered open-ended nominations from panellists across 41 countries, asking them simply: “Thinking about people alive in the world today, which [man or woman] do you most admire?” These nominations were then used to compile a list of the 20 men and 20 women who received the most nominations and were nominated in at least four countries. An additional 10 popular local figures were added to the lists for individual countries. 

In January we then used the lists to poll each of the 41 countries asking two questions: “who do you truly admire?”, where respondents could make multiple selections, and “who do you MOST admire?”, where they could only pick one. These two numbers were combined into a percentage share of admiration, displayed to the right of each name in the graphic above and table below, which shows the full results for every country including local celebrities and public figures:

Numbers show the percentage share of admiration for each person in 41 countries worldwide

Choose a country to see the most admired people worldwide



By asking respondents two questions, we can understand both the breadth (i.e. global reach) and the intensity of a person's support.

Altogether, we polled in countries that constitute more than two-thirds of the world's population. However, some parts of the world were better represented than others, so we weighted up the impact certain countries had on the final scores and weighted down others so the global scores more accurately reflect the breakdown of sentiment in the world overall.

All of the surveys were conducted online, and in many of the countries the internet penetration is low to the point where the sample can only be said to be representative to the online population. The countries where the online population is lower than 60% of the total are China, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, South Africa and Thailand.