Research methods in policy focus on deductive and top down methods to analyze data and outcomes and co:census aims to change this through our digital learning programs. 

The community voice is essential to understanding public needs: is there a greater need for jobs? Is public transit equitable for diverse community members? What are more unique methods of solving housing challenges in major cities?

The go-to solution is often gathering census and ACS data to answer these questions but that has one major problem: these massive datasets can be biased and are often missing nuanced information that can help design equitable community solutions. 

How can these datasets be biased? Consider the tools used to gather these data points. If only being conducted by paper and online: what community members may you miss who do not have access to the internet and do not have a direct mailing address? Add to this the level of public mistrust that exists which prevents people from reporting their conditions to the government and have you a system that inherently misses the mark on leveraging the community voice as a valuable dataset. 

The team at co:census has been committed to solving this major problem and our most recent learning lab dedicated to Social Equity is helping three major institutions also tackle these issues. 

If you consider the fact that over 6,000 tweets are sent every second, there are more ways than just public surveys to gather the community voice. Our Social Equity Learning Lab is designed as a digital learning experience that can support public agencies in building trust, designing equitable policies, and more intentional community engagement. This digital program, dedicated to giving policy professionals the methods and tools that will support their outreach and research efforts — ensures they are meeting equity & ethics with analytical rigor. 

Our Fall cohort in this program include the Connecticut Department of Transportation, Durham Planning Agency, and a global housing nonprofit organization; all of which aim to better support their communities by prioritizing equity. While the cohort for this digital learning lab has just started in October, we look forward to reporting outcomes at the end of the year.

About co:census

co:census is an enterprise product that helps teams transform public feedback into insights. We help these teams gather inclusive data through open-ended questions and provide contextual analysis so your data has depth.  The revolutionary platform connects customers to expert teams who build multilingual, inclusive surveys and analyze qualitative data in one-third of the time and cost of average public studies. Read our customers stories and social impact here. 

Contact: community@seamsociallabs.com

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