Always Make Sure to Let Participants Not Know

In Austin Cityzen helped coordinate feedback on policies proposed by the Mayor. When asked their council district, nearly 30% of respondents to the survey didn’t know.

It reminds us that it’s always important to let the public not know something. This provides an opportunity for constructive feedback and learning — in the case of Austin, saying you didn’t know your council district took respondents to a lookup page on the City’s website.

Often when pulling together a survey the responses can seem so understandable and clear. For many, particularly those who are new to municipal engagement, options lack context or clarity. Remembering to offer an unsure or don’t know option can increase participation and provides an entry for follow up campaigns.

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