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Project Title:

Measuring Social and Civic Engagement and Social Cohesion in Surveys
PIN: DBASSE-CNSTAT-11-05        

Major Unit:

Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education

Sub Unit: Committee on National Statistics

RSO: Mackie, Chris

Subject/Focus Area: Behavioral and Social Sciences

Project Scope
The purpose of this study is to identify measurement approaches that can lead to improved understanding of civic engagement, social cohesion, and social capital—and their potential role in explaining the functioning of society. With the needs of data users in mind, the panel will examine conceptual frameworks developed in the literature to determine promising measures and measurement methods for informing public policy discourse. The panel's report will identify working definitions of key terms; advise on the feasibility and specifications of indicators relevant to analyses of social, economic, and health domains; and assess the strength of the evidence regarding the relationship between these indicators and observed trends in crime, employment, resilience to shocks (e.g., natural disasters), etc. The panel will weigh the relative merits of surveys, administrative records, and non-government data sources. The appropriate role of the federal statistical system will be considered, and recommendations will be offered for improving the measurement of civic health through population surveys conducted by the government—acknowledging an environment characterized by rapidly changing data and information infrastructures. The final report will also identify priority areas for research, development, and implementation flowing from the conclusions reached during the study.
The project is sponsored by the Corporation for National and Community Service
The approximate start date for the project is October 1, 2011.
Note (04-17-2013): The Project Scope has been revised for clarity. The updated version is as shown above. Also, only one report will be forthcoming from the study at its conclusion. No interim report will be issued as initially planned.

Project Duration: 24 months    

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Committee Membership
Committee Membership

 Meeting 1 - 03/01/2012
 Meeting 2 - 05/17/2012
 Meeting 3 - 09/20/2012
 Meeting 4 - 02/07/2013
 Meeting 5 - 09/13/2013


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