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The Student Side of the The Challenge of Democracy Site
Updated March 10, 2017

Internet Links for Chapter 5: Public Opinion

Chapter 5 on Public Opinion covers the methodology of polling, the process of political socialization, and the relationships between social groups and political. values. The Internet contains a great deal of material on these topics. Here are some links that may prove to be especially useful.

Survey Research
Polling Report
Use this to locate specific questions asked in polls during the past decade. as reported by "An independent, nonpartisan resource on trends in American public opinion." Many questions come from polling organizations below.
Gallup Poll
"George Gallup founded the American Institute of Public Opinion -- which evolved into The Gallup Organization -- in 1935. Since then, Gallup-affiliated organizations in the United States and throughout the world have assessed public opinion on a wide range of political, social, and economic issues, including the hopes and fears of people around the globe, their leisure-time activities, their morals and manners, and their religious beliefs."
Pew Research Center for the People and the Press
"An independent, non-partisan public opinion research organization that studies attitudes toward politics, the press and public policy issues. . . The Center conducts regular monthly polls on politics and major policy issues as well as the News Interest Index, a weekly survey aimed at gauging the public's interest in and reaction to major news events. Shorter commentaries are produced on a regular basis addressing the issues of the day from a public opinion perspective. In addition, the Center periodically fields major surveys on the news media, social issues and international affairs."
National Opinion Research Center
Founded in 1941, NORC is based at the University of Chicago. It is especially noted for its General Social Survey, which started in 1972 and continues to monitor social change and the growing complexity of American society.
Roper Center for Public Opinion Research
"The Roper Center for Public Opinion Research is one of the world's leading archives of social science data, specializing in data from surveys of public opinion. The data held by the Roper Center range from the 1930s, when survey research was in its infancy, to the present. Most of the data are from the United States, but over 50 nations are represented."
American National Election Studies
Originating in 1948 at the Survey Research Center at the University of Michigan, ANES has a body of comparable national surveys for American presidential elections since 1952.
Odum Institute Data Archive
Affiliated with the University of North Carolina: "The Dataverse Network at Odum contains one of the oldest and largest catalog of machine-readable data in the U.S. It has an extensive collection of U.S. Census data, including one of the most complete holdings for 1970 Census files. Other major sources of data include the North Carolina State Data Center, which distributes North Carolina census data, and the National Center for Health Statistics. Many studies are public, but note that some studies are restricted to UNC affiliates."
NPR/Kaiser/Kennedy School Polls
Three institutions collaborate in conduction national polls on important issues in politics, business, health, science, and public affairs.
NPR/Kaiser/Kennedy Poll: Americans Distrust/Want Government
An example, is this report from a 2000 poll: "Americans may say they distrust government, but a new survey by NPR, the Kaiser Family Foundation, and Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government casts doubt on what they really mean when they say that: Most Americans, the survey found, want more government involvement and more government regulation to solve the nation's problems."
American Viewpoint
"American Viewpoint is one of the most widely-respected public opinion research and strategic message consulting firms in the United States. Founded in 1985 by Linda DiVall, the company has established a national reputation for outstanding quantitative and qualitative research in politics, corporate affairs, public policy and government relations." This firm does surveys for Republican and business clients.
Americans and the World: Public Opinion on International Affairs
"Welcome to the Americans and the World website, a source of in-depth information on US public opinion on international issues. The site includes The Digest, which provides comprehensive analyses of polling on various international topics. Over the coming months we will periodically release analyses of US public opinion on other international topics."
Arab-Americans Institute
"As the only national organization that promotes Arab American participation in the U.S. electoral system, AAI has developed a host of services, from voter education to liaison with the national parties, to support the community's activities. We are also the leading policy and research organization on domestic and policy concerns of Arab Americans." Conducts its own polls and issues reports.
Center on Policy Attitudes 
"Created to help give a greater voice to the American public in the policymaking process. Founded in 1992, COPA seeks to deepen understanding of American public attitudes by conducting in-depth nationwide polls, focus groups, and interviews; integrating its findings together with data from other organizations into a coherent analysis of majority opinion; and actively communicating its findings to the policymaking community, the media, academia and the public."
Public Agenda: Public Opinion and Policy Analysis
"Public Agenda, an innovative public opinion research and public engagement organization, works to strengthen our democracy's capacity to tackle tough public policy issues. Nonpartisan and nonprofit, Public Agenda was founded by social scientist and author Daniel Yankelovich and former Secretary of State Cyrus Vance in 1975."
Political Socialization
"Political socialization of 14-year olds
The IEA Civic Education Study tested and surveyed nationally representative samples consisting of 90,000 14-year-old students in 28 countries, and 50,000 17- to 19-year-old students in 16 countries throughout 1999 and 2000. Questionnaires were also administered to teachers and school principals. The content domains covered in the instrument were identified through national case studies during 1996-1997 and included democracy, national identity, and social cohesion and diversity.
Constitutional Rights Foundation - Chicago
"The Constitutional Rights Foundation Chicago (CRFC) works with elementary and secondary schools to develop critical thinking skills, civic participation, and commitment to the rule of law among young people. Nonprofit and nonpartisan, CRFC is a national leader in the design and implementation of quality law-related education (LRE) programs for local, national, and international projects. CRFC was founded in 1974 as part of the Constitutional Rights Foundation in Los Angeles and became an independent 501(c)(3) organization in 1990."