NORC Secures Grant to Continue General Social Survey
Innovations introduced in 2020 will inform 2022–2024 research.
CHICAGO, November 18, 2021 – The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded NORC at the University of Chicago a grant to continue conducting the General Social Survey (GSS)—NORC's longest-running project and one of its most influential. Since 1972, the biennial, nationally representative GSS has been used to monitor social change and study U.S. society. – The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded NORC at the University of Chicago a grant to continue conducting the General Social Survey (GSS)—NORC’s longest-running project and one of its most influential. Since 1972, the biennial, nationally representative GSS has been used to monitor social change and study U.S. society.
The GSS is one of the most influential studies in the social sciences. Insights from the GSS have helped scholars, policymakers, and journalists understand how the characteristics, behaviors, and attitudes of the U.S. population have shifted over the past five decades. GSS data provide content for newspaper, magazine, and journal articles, as well as policy reports and recommendations. More than 32,500 journal articles, books, theses, and PhD dissertations are based on GSS data, and about 400,000 students use the GSS in their classes each year.
“We are so honored to be doing the 33rd and 34th rounds of the GSS, which represents the outstanding work and dedication of our GSS proposal and project teams,” said Dan Gaylin, president and CEO of NORC. “We view the GSS as an American treasure. The unique insights it provides on societal attitudes and behaviors are essential information for understanding our past and where we are heading.”
In 2020, NORC demonstrated agility and scientific rigor when the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted GSS field operations. In consultation with project stakeholders, NORC researchers leveraged the opportunity to innovate by including a longitudinal design alongside the typical cross-sectional GSS. The team also shifted from face-to-face data collection to web and telephone and quickly implemented the multimode survey design.
“The 2020 GSS represents a number of historic firsts,” said René Bautista, director of the GSS and NORC principal scientist. “We found a way to give researchers the opportunity to understand the American public and the changes we’re going through more holistically than in years past. We are excited to build on the 2020 mode shift to formally test the traditional face-to-face approach compared to the experimental multimode alternative.”
The GSS has been a thriving platform for international collaboration. Through the International Social Survey Programme (ISSP)—a cross-national collaboration co-founded by NORC—researchers also use GSS data to compare U.S. trends to those in 42 ISSP member countries across five continents. Since its inception, all ISSP survey modules have been fielded in the United States as part of the GSS. In July, Bautista was elected to serve on the executive committee for the European Survey Research Association (ESRA) for the 2021–2023 period.
The new team of principal investigators includes Mike Davern, NORC; René Bautista, NORC; Jeremy Freese, Stanford University; Stephen L. Morgan, Johns Hopkins University; and Pamela Herd, Georgetown University.
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 email@example.com or (703) 217-6814 (cell).