Thai Cave Rescue was the most important news story of June and July according to Core’s Cultural Index

Ireland’s on-going heatwave ranked in second place followed by Ryanair pilot strikes

Warning from Children’s Ombudsman about ‘invisible’ homeless children had lowest level of awareness

The Thai Cave Rescue was the most important news story in Ireland in June and July 2018 according to the monthly Cultural Index from Core, Ireland’s largest marketing communications company.

The Cultural Index, generated by the research practice of Core, examines awareness amongst the general public of the top news stories making headlines, and the importance of such stories in the context of Irish society and culture. Surveying 1,000 people, two scores – awareness and importance – are combined to give a 100 point Cultural Index scale which shows how engaged people are with various news stories.

When 12 members of a Thai soccer team and their 25-year-old coach became trapped in a cave north of Chiang Rai, their battle for survival captured the attention of a global audience. Over 4.4 million stories featured online about their rescue and the story rankest highest amongst those surveyed, with an awareness of 92%. When the importance of the story was factored in, this gave a Cultural Index scoring of 74.5, taking the top spot on the leader board.

Ireland’s longest heatwave in over forty years was the second most important story, generating 90% of overall awareness amongst respondents. When the importance of the story was factored in, this gave a Cultural Index scoring of 69.8.

Ryanair was the third story featured on the Cultural Index as the company was forced to cancel and postpone a large number of flights due to industrial action by their pilots. Awareness of this story ranked highly amongst the public, with 91% of the Irish public aware of the strikes. When the importance of the story was factored in, this gave a Cultural Index scoring of 63.4.

As a result of the good weather, some stories, which may have ranked higher at another time, appear to have been overlooked by the public. The story which had the lowest level of awareness – just 31% of all adults – was the Children’s Ombudsman sounding a warning about ‘invisible’ homeless children and family hubs. However, among those who were aware, this story scored the highest level of importance, with 85% claiming it as important or very important.

Other stories overlooked were former Anglo-Irish executive David Drumm’s suspended sentence and that Dublin house prices are now €150,000 higher than in 2013. People were more aware of Love Island, The World Cup and the Pope’s visit.

The full top ten stories to feature on the Core Research Culture Index for June / July 2018 were:

  1. Boys football team rescued from Thai cave                                            74.5
  2. Ireland has the longest heatwave since 1976                                         69.8
  3. Ryanair cancel flights due to strikes                                                        63.4
  4. US policy separates immigrant parents and children                          62.5
  5. US president Trump and North Korea’s Kim Jong Un meet              59.4
  6. Prime Minister Theresa May forces through proposed Brexit plan  55.2
  7. World Cup takes place in Russia                                                              54.9
  8. Three men injured in a shooting in Bray Boxing Club                         52.4
  9. Trump attends NATO and is met by protestors in the U.K.                49.8
  10. Prince Harry and Meghan visit Dublin                                                    42.5



To view the full findings of the Core Research Cultural Index June – July 2018, please click here: