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American Association for Public Opinion Research

February 2016

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by Mollyann Brodie, President
By the time you are reading this, the first of the 2016 Presidential primaries will be over and the first round of media stories about “how did the polls do?” will be flying through your social media feeds. This is the official beginning of what promises to be 10 straight months of such stories and such focus. Even for those of us not involved in election polling, this period will bring heightened scrutiny and attention to all of our work. Your friends, your family members, and your clients will likely bring up the performance of the polls. If election polling is your bread and butter, you are even more attuned to the claims and complaints, and living in the crossfire of every journalist, pundit, individual with a Twitter account, and often the campaigns and the candidates themselves.
by Kristen Olson, MCR Chair

AAPOR ended 2015 with almost 2400 members – 2394, to be precise. But, with the website changes last year, we know less and less about you, our members. We are missing background information, such as demographics and industry sector, for about one-third of AAPOR members. We use this information to ensure we are serving all parts of our membership, to determine whether a diverse set of members are involved in different aspects of the organization, and to evaluate where we need to improve.
by Michael Link, Past President
On February 15, the newest slate of candidates for AAPOR’s Executive Council will be released to the membership in advance of voting which begins in early March. I remember receiving a call back in 2007 from then Past-President Rob Daves informing me that I was being considered for office that year. I thought, “What an honor! That’s great! But how did that happen?” That year I had not “tossed my hat in the ring” myself, so what was the process for me receiving a nomination?
by Tim Johnson, Chair, Transparency Initiative Coordinating Committee
We have several Transparency Initiative updates to report as we enter 2016:
AAPOR received a letter from the Federal Committee on Statistical Methodology (FCSM) indicating their interest in the Transparency Initiative and noting their support for our shared value of scientific openness. A link to this letter, which also outlines some of the federal statistical community’s transparency-related documents, is now available on the TI web page.
by David Dutwin, Conference Chair
AAPOR has historically been a very welcoming conference. While there are exceptions, AAPOR has traditionally accepted about five of every six submissions (the five year average rejection rate being 16%). This year, however, we had an all-time high number of submissions. Adding to the challenge was strong feedback from our members that sessions with six papers was not as rewarding and effective as sessions with five (methodological brief sessions excepted).
Congratulations to Tanya Mulvey 
Society for Human Resource Management
“Your opinion is important, even if it’s not significant.”