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Survey of Common Cause Members, 1981: [United States] (ICPSR 8632)

Principal Investigator(s): Siegel, Jonathan W.


The purpose of this data collection was to explore the political, social, and personal factors that facilitate or hinder participation in a political group like Common Cause. Primarily designed to examine political participation and the role of voluntary associations, the study also was stimulated by the growing literature on the role of incentives and self-interest in organizational life and political participation. The three sections of the questionnaire focused on: (1) Common Cause, including the respondent's reasons for joining, participation in internal activities, knowledge of the group's position on important issues, and activities on behalf of the group, (2) the respondent's views on national issues and political institutions, and (3) respondent's social background (including education, income, ethnicity, employment, age, and sex) and participation in partisan and non-partisan activities besides Common Cause. These data permit a comparison of rank-and-file members of Common Cause with those identified as activists in the organization.

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Study Description


Siegel, Jonathan W. SURVEY OF COMMON CAUSE MEMBERS, 1981: [UNITED STATES]. Stanford, CA: Stanford University, Dept. of Political Science [producer], 1982. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 1988. https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR08632.v1

Persistent URL: https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR08632.v1

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This study was funded by:

  • National Science Foundation (SES-8105708)

Scope of Study

Time Period:   

  • 1981-10--1982-01

Date of Collection:   

  • 1981-10--1982-01

Universe:    1. All Common Cause members listed on membership rolls. 2. Individuals identified as activists in Common Cause records.

Data Type(s):    survey data

Data Collection Notes:

While the data are in card image format, they do not contain a card number variable. Respondent's state and congressional district of residence, and variables providing detailed information regarding activity within Common Cause have been collapsed into three summary variables for reasons of confidentiality.


Sample:    Stratified random sample.

Data Source:

mail surveys


Original ICPSR Release:   1989-01-10

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