About Our Name

We are frequently asked about proper use of the name of our organization in their stories or research reports. Here is the answer to that question.

Our name is NORC at the University of Chicago for all public purposes.

The first reference that we recommend to reporters is: “the non-partisan and objective research organization NORC at the University of Chicago,” with subsequent references simply NORC.

If you are using information from the General Social Survey, which is a project of NORC, the citation we recommend is the following. “The General Social Survey (GSS) is a project of the independent research organization NORC at the University of Chicago, with principal funding from the National Science Foundation.” Subsequent reference would be simply GSS.

We were founded and incorporated in 1941 as the National Opinion Research Center.

In 2010, to reflect the many changes in our mission and the global nature of our work, our to-do-business (TDB) name was established as NORC. NORC is not an acronym, it is our name, as with organizations such as IBM, AT&T, RAND, and GEICO. We use NORC at the University of Chicago to emphasize our close affiliation with the University.

If it is spoken, we say each letter: N-O-R-C, and avoid the temptation to say “Norc” as one word.