An openness when informing public discourse

The Transparency Initiative

The Elon University Poll is a charter member of the Transparency Initiative, a program created by the American Association for Public Opinion Research in 2014 to educate polling firms on ways to better share how they collect and interpret their information.

“The Elon Poll is proud to be a part of this process because we have always believed in and practiced transparency and being as specific and detailed about our methodology and procedures as possible,” said Assistant Professor Kenneth Fernandez, director of the Elon University Poll. “This is a very important initiative that allows consumers of polling information full information on how survey data are collected.”

The voluntary participation signified the Elon University Poll’s willingness to clearly state in its reports how questions were asked, in what order, who funded the poll and then conducted it, and a definition of the population under study, among other details.

While the Elon Poll encourages journalists to suggest questions and occasionally conducts community surveys in coordination with local nonprofit organizations, pollsters perform no contract work and see their role as one that provides a public service to the region and state.

Information from polls is shared with media, citizens and public officials to facilitate informed public policy making through the better understanding of citizens’ opinions and attitudes. Polls are conducted three times each semester.

“It is nice that AAPOR has thought long and carefully about these requirements and that there is now a clear standard and guide for scholars and practitioners to use when presenting their results,” Fernandez said of the initiative.

Association of Academic Survey Research Organizations

The Elon University Poll also is a member of the Association of Academic Survey Research Organizations, a “leading voice in support and promotion of excellence in survey research conducted in academic settings.”

The AASRO promotes excellence and integrity in survey research by helping organizations advance the research, education and service goals of their respective colleges and universities.