Empowering local government through shared insights.
While every local community is distinct, many of the challenges they face are common. And yet, there hasn't been data and analysis available comparing the experiences of local government leaders across the United States. Our mission at CivicPulse is to empower local governments and their stakeholders by generating shared insights that are nationally contextualized but locally informed. In doing so, we also seek to bring greater attention to local government within our nation’s civil discourse.
We generate insights about local government through national surveys of local officials, often partnering with researchers and other experts. Our surveys consistently sample a diverse representation of leaders from all 50 states and from small towns to large cities. We’re proud that our commitment to generating useful knowledge, and our respect for the officials who participate, have led over 80 percent of first-time survey participants to agree to join our ongoing survey panel. CivicPulse also produces academic papers and policy reports on critical issues facing local governments, and works diligently to deliver these insights back to local governments and their communities.
Our Recent Reports
Belief in the importance of local government for civil society
Adherence to the highest standards of rigor in our research and analysis
Impartiality and independence as an information provider
CivicPulse was founded in 2018 by a few PhD students in Stanford’s political science department. While pursuing our research interests in local government, we discovered that the United States lacked a reliable national data source on the backgrounds, beliefs, and experiences of the more than 200,000 local government leaders who enact and implement the policies that shape our day-to-day lives. In starting CivicPulse, we aspired to build a collaborative platform for generating shared insights for both researchers like ourselves but also the broader civic community. Since our founding, our small but committed team has completed surveys and released data and reports on a wide array of issues facing local governments across the United States. By ensuring our practices are respectful toward the local government officials who generously participate in our surveys—and that the findings provide them insights in their own work—we have steadily grown our volunteer panel of local government officials—representing communities, big and small, from all over the United States.