Numbers, Facts and Trends Shaping Your World

How Americans Get in Touch With Government


We owe special thanks to Elena Larsen, former Research Fellow at the Pew Internet & American Life Project. Prior to taking a position at the consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton, Elena was intimately involved in survey design and analysis of the preliminary results. Her expertise was invaluable in shaping this project in its early stages.

The survey design was also helped in important ways by officials from the General Services Administration. Darlene Meskell, Mary Levy, and Pat Wood of the GSA Office of Citizen Services and Communications were thoughtful and generous partners and analysts. We also thank M.J. Jameson, Associate Administrator, GSA Office of Citizen Services and Communications, for her support of the project.

This report also benefited from comments and criticisms encountered at talks given at the National Research Council and the RAND Corporation. We are grateful to participants at these discussions, with special thanks to Kevin Finneran at the National Research Council and Edward Balkovich at RAND for extending the invitations.

About the Pew Internet & American Life Project: The Pew Internet Project is a nonprofit, non-partisan think tank that explores the impact of the Internet on children, families, communities, the work place, schools, health care and civic/political life. The Project aims to be an authoritative source for timely information on the Internet’s growth and societal impact. Support for the project is provided by The Pew Charitable Trusts. The project’s Web site:

About Princeton Survey Research Associates: PSRA conducted the survey that is covered in this report. It is an independent research company specializing in social and policy work. The firm designs, conducts, and analyzes surveys worldwide. Its expertise also includes qualitative research and content analysis. With offices in Princeton, New Jersey, and Washington, D.C., PSRA serves the needs of clients around the nation and the world. The firm can be reached at 911 Commons Way, Princeton, NJ 08540, by telephone at 609-924-9204, by fax at 609-924-7499, or by email at

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