The American Institutional Confidence (AIC) Poll measures confidence in institutions and support for democracy in the United States. The first wave of interviews took place in June and July 2018. The second wave of interviews will take place in July 2021. It is a nationally representative survey conducted by YouGov. It stands out from other surveys of confidence in institutions in several ways, including:
- It is a panel survey. We will attempt to recontact every 2018 AIC respondent for the 2021 wave. The planned 2021 survey wave will consist of reinterviews with approximately 2,100 of the 2018 respondents, plus 1,200 new respondents.
- It tracks changes between 2018 and 2021, revealing how faith in American institutions and in democracy itself changed during the last 2 years of the Trump presidency, the 2020 election and its contentious aftermath.
- It contains several types of questions about national institutions that do not appear in other surveys, including open-ended questions, questions about leaders of these institutions, and questions about the partisan leanings of these institutions.
- It contains questions about satisfaction with American democracy (open and closed ended) and support for democratic principles in the same survey as an elaborate series of questions about national institutions, allowing researchers to examine the relationship between these attitudes.
- It contains a larger number of questions about institutions and about support for democratic principles on the same survey than any other U.S. poll, allowing researchers to see how these two things are related.
- It contains both a large overall sample and over-samples of minority racial groups. This allows researchers to analyze these attitudes among different racial groups.
The American Institutional Confidence Poll has been financially supported by a number of different sources. It has been supported by a grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. At Georgetown University, the AIC Poll has received support from the Massive Data Institute, the Baker Trust, and the McCourt School of Public Policy. At New York University, the AIC Poll has received support from the Faculty of Arts and Sciences .
Jonathan Ladd is a Co-Principle Investigator and the main point of contact for the AIC Poll. He is Associate Professor in the McCourt School of Public Policy and Department of Government at Georgetown University. He is also a Faculty Affiliate and member of the Executive Board in the Massive Data Institute at Georgetown. Please direct inquiries to him.
Sean Kates is a Co-Principle Investigator of the AIC Poll. He is the Associate Director of Programs in Data Analytics at the Penn Program on Opinion Research and Election Studies (PORES) at the University of Pennsylvania.
Joshua Tucker is a Co-Principle Investigator of the AIC Poll. He is Professor in the Department of Politics at New York University, where is is also Director of the Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia, and Co-Director of the Social Media and Political Participation (SMaPP) lab. He is a member of the Board of Overseers of the American National Election Study and of the Planning Committee of the Comparative Study of Electoral Systems.
Datasets and codebooks are available on the Data page. If you are a researcher or reporter who has a question about the AIC Poll that is not answered anywhere on this website, please full out the form below.