How your voice is corrupted in citizen satisfaction surveys

How satisfied are you?

June 18, 2012
CALGARY, AB, Jun 18, 2012/ Troy Media/ – Some years ago, the City of Calgary conducted a multi-million dollar effort to engage citizen’s in the development of a new transportation strategy. The Go Plan used consultations, focus groups, workshops and polls to engage citizens and gather feedback.

Shortly before the release of the final report, someone thought it might be a good idea to conduct a more scientific survey of Calgarian’s. It was an afterthought, a last minute effort to ensure i’s were dotted and t’s crossed. A professor of transportation planning at the University of Calgary was quickly contracted to conduct the survey.

The results completely contradicted what was already in the soon-to-be released Go Plan report, setting up a potential public relations disaster. Disaster was adverted by simultaneously releasing and dismissing the scientific effort as a small, insignificant part of the larger consultative process. Thus, the unbiased picture of what Calgarian’s wanted in a transportation system was ignored, while millions were wasted meeting the needs of specialized interests. <Read the entire article>

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