The state of our AAPOR union

When it’s the middle of the Conference Season, you know that American Association for Public Opinion Research Conference is right around the corner. 2023 marks the 78th Annual Conference for AAPOR, where producers and users of survey data from a variety of disciplines gather for educational and networking opportunities with some of the most knowledgeable and at times legendary brains in the industry. The end goal of the AAPOR community at large is to continually improve how survey research is conducted and disseminated, and AAPOR’s members have a vested interest in these continued efforts.

For those working for a corporation, it’s easy to look at AAPOR as a networking opportunity or a business trip. Everyone has their booths, researchers are presenting their findings, we all have the best companies and services to offer and it’s an incredible place to meet new research partners and to make connections that can lead to business opportunities. Yet, none of that is the actual value of what AAPOR brings to our industry.

In today’s world, survey research has gotten poor media play due to election polling issues in the post President Obama era. Regardless of what type of survey research you are conducting, legitimate researchers are all trying to peel the same onion, to find scientifically provable truths that help our clients understand the landscape. We all know the challenge of gaining accurate data within limited budgets, and the continued reduction in response rates. What works today might not work tomorrow, but you can’t call yourself a researcher if you aren’t continuously trying to figure out a better way to do conduct your research. This is why the AAPOR organization and its members are so valuable. If our peers, friends, and colleagues in this collective brain trust can’t find the solutions to the challenges that we all face, then I suspect no one can. I’ve always said that “No one is going to stand up for our industry unless we stand up for ourselves by being good stewards of science and of the public trust.”

So, as we get ready to board our flights to Philadelphia, I would offer to you that the State of our AAPOR Union is strong, and it’s truly better than ever. Let’s take this moment to redouble our efforts to find solutions, to find truths, and to find each other. See you in Philly!

Matthew McCoy
Precision Opinion, Inc.