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New Survey Launched to Measure Impacts of COVID-19 on the American People

Press Release

Originally published by The Data Foundation.

WASHINGTON, D.C.– The Data Foundation is launching a new household survey to understand the impacts of novel coronavirus in the United States. The COVID Impact Survey will offer policymakers and the public relevant and timely insights about health, social, and economic impacts associated with the pandemic.

“The American people and our country’s decision-makers are in great need of better information to support decisions about how to respond to the coronavirus pandemic,” said Nick Hart, Ph.D., President of the Data Foundation. “The results from this survey will contribute to filling a major gap in knowledge that currently exists.”

The project is funded through contributions from philanthropy, including $500,000 provided by the David and Lucile Packard Foundation.

“Now more than ever, science can light the path as we race to combat the spread of COVID-19,” said Packard Foundation Interim President Craig Neyman. “We are pleased to support this effort to find one more piece of the puzzle that will inform effective policy decisions around COVID-19. Because ideas grounded in science and research have real potential to create lasting change, decision makers in philanthropy, business, and government must thoughtfully invest in needed research now, so that we can combat this pandemic together.”

The questions in the COVID Impact Survey were developed in consultation with experts and advisors in public health, economics, social sciences, and survey methods. In addition, information will be made available for 18 states and metropolitan areas. The survey will be administered by NORC at the University of Chicago. NORC is an objective, non-partisan research institution that has been delivering reliable data and rigorous analysis since 1941.

“We are seeing a great need across the country for more information at the national and regional level on the pandemic,” said Dan Gaylin, President of NORC at the University of Chicago which is conducting the survey. “The entire NORC team is proud to be part of the COVID Impact Survey project, offering our world-class survey methods, operations, and data analysis support for this critical project.”

Initial information about the data collected from the survey is expected to be available in late April. Additional details about the project and opportunities for contributing are available at

“We are seeing a great need across the country for more information at the national and regional level on the pandemic.”

Dan Gaylin


“We are seeing a great need across the country for more information at the national and regional level on the pandemic.”

About the COVID Impact Survey Project: The COVID-19 Household Impact Survey is a philanthropic effort to provide national and regional statistics about health, the economy, and social dynamics in the United States. The COVID Impact Survey aims to fill an information gap that currently exists in the United States, supported by philanthropy in the absence of a current analogous government survey.

About the Data Foundation: The Data Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit based in Washington, D.C. The organization focuses on studying and developing strategies to improve the federal government’s data infrastructure to support evidence-based policymaking and open data products. Supported by private sector, philanthropy, and government contract funding, the Data Foundation will provide administration and operational support for the project, including communications and coordination with key policymaking communities.

About NORC at the University of Chicago

NORC at the University of Chicago conducts research and analysis that decision-makers trust. As a nonpartisan research organization and a pioneer in measuring and understanding the world, we have studied almost every aspect of the human experience and every major news event for more than eight decades. Today, we partner with government, corporate, and nonprofit clients around the world to provide the objectivity and expertise necessary to inform the critical decisions facing society.

Contact: For more information, please contact Eric Young at NORC at or (703) 217-6814 (cell).