Democracy, Governance, and Citizenship

NORC’s earliest projects included opinion polling during World War II to help policymakers, academics, and government officials better understand public attitudes toward rationing and other elements of the war effort. Since then, examining the intersection between public opinion and public policy has been at the heart of much of NORC’s work and is the focus of our Center for the Study of Politics and Society. The General Social Survey collects public opinion on a host of issues related to democracy, governance, and citizenship, including civil liberties, immigration, and national security. Additionally, NORC conducts evaluations and implementations of international programs designed to promote democracy and civic engagement and reduce election‑related violence, among other objectives.

Representative Projects

2012 NORC Presidential Election Study. The 2012 NORC Presidential Election Study was conducted in the weeks prior to the Presidential election to measure public opinion about important issues the country faces – economic recovery, health care costs, and extreme partisanship. More

General Social Survey (GSS). Since 1972, the General Social Survey (GSS) has been monitoring societal change and studying the growing complexity of American society. The GSS is NORC’s longest running project, and one of its most influential.​​ More

International Housing Sector Review. Under the sponsorship of the International Housing Coalition (IHC), in 2009 NORC staff authored a paper for wide public dissemination that argues for a very substantial change in U.S. foreign assistance policy. More

Strengthening Institutions to Improve Public Expenditure Accountability. NORC studied Global Development Network's impact on (a) the quality of policy research produced by grantee/partner institutions, and (b) through opinion research, an understanding of grantees’ perceived effectiveness in the policy arena. More

Transparency and Accountability Project- Phase III (TAP 2 & 3). Under contract with the Results for Development Institute (R4D), NORC created the evaluation concept designed to assess the effects of the capacity building program implemented by R4D  in transitioning and developing countries. More


News The Washington Post: GSS data provides a look at how Americans view democracy in the United States More
Posted: 1.4.2017 3:29PM
News The Associated Press: The AP-NORC Center looked at how Americans feel about the Presidential election More
Posted: 9.26.2016 3:25PM