Did you Receive a neighborhood COnnectivity Survey (NCS)?


Our team has dropped off or mailed paper surveys to a randomly-selected set of households in Pennsylvania. We will be launching in Akron, Ohio later this year.  If you live in Boalsburg, Centre Hall, Philipsburg, Milesburg or Bellefonte, your survey was hand-delivered, and we had a great time visiting and learning more about your community. Many Penn State students don't get to see the towns that surround State College and University Park and comprise our region, so it is especially fun for our group.


About: We're glad you received one and hope you enjoy thinking about your friends and family as you fill it out. The survey took about a year to construct and test, and we're excited to launch it in partnership with the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.  We estimate it takes about 30 minutes and your responses are carefully kept anonymous. You can take it on paper or online.


How will the information be used: We are collecting information about connectivity patterns to understand what kinds of cities and neighborhoods tend to connect with distant or local places--or a mixture of the two. As the world 'globalizes', and we travel frequently and communicate digitally, our social support may be more spread out than in the past (or maybe not!). This survey asks also asks questions that can help cities be more resilient in emergency situations by knowing what kinds of external resources are available to different communities. Once the data is 'cleaned' and grouped, other scientists will be able to use it to answer important research questions about how to better serve neighborhoods and provide social resources that are most helpful. The data we currently have to answer these questions is leaving out certain populations (like those who don't use Twitter), or doesn't exist at a geographic scale that we can use for making maps.  We're hoping our new data will fill some of these gaps.


What happens after I send my response: Your data is coded into a geo-database, and then mixed in with other data to privatize individual responses. We match place names up with a larger dataset of place names and create sets of distances between hometowns and places you list. Also, if you have sent in your responses, please allow gift cards 4-6 weeks to arrive, as they are ordered individually.


Thank you for participating--your input is very important to us and the Friendly Cities initiative. If you have any questions or need assistance, please contact us by email (clio@psu.edu) or phone (814) 865-1175.