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Winter 2023 Letter from Director Joe Hoereth

Our Director Dr. Joseph Hoereth rounds up 2023

Friends of IPCE,

I hope everyone has had a great end to the fall semester… I always look forward to this time of year, as reflecting on our impact catalyzes the work ahead. I'm excited to share what we here at the Institute have been working on this past semester, and to look forward to what's next in the new year.

In August we welcomed 20 undergraduate students in the Urban Public Policy Fellowship (UPPF) program for the 2022-2023 academic year, and they are already hard at work at their internship sites. This cohort represents a large array of policy and research interests, and I am excited to see their progression as leaders as they navigate internships and research projects throughout the academic year. We welcomed three returning Graduate Mentors to the program: Marissa G. Leal, Alejandro Monzón, and Lamonica Sykes. We would also like to welcome our newest Graduate Mentor, Marcus Daniels, to the program.

On November 15th, we presented Associate Professor of Public Policy, Management, and Analytics Dr. Allyson Holbrook as part of IPCE's Civic Engagement Lunch Talk series at the UIC Daley Library. Her presentation was titled "Public Opinion Surveys: Attitudes, Knowledge, Perceptions, and Beliefs". Dr. Holbrook and her team's research involved three studies to examine attitudes, knowledge, perceptions, and beliefs associated with public opinion surveys among adults. The studies included focus groups of Chicago residents to explore how they thought about public opinion surveys and their role in democracy. The second survey was a pilot test of measures to assess attitudes, beliefs, and knowledge about public opinion surveys. Finally, the third study involved measurement of attitudes, knowledge, and perceptions about public opinion surveys and included vignette experiments to assess how the characteristics of a survey affect perceptions of it. A recording of the talk is available here, and stay tuned for spring dates for lunch talks from our other 2022-23 Research Award recipients Zitlali Morales, Robin Reames, Alana Gunn, Thea Crum, and Rebecca Woodard.

We are excited to announce the research projects that the Institute will help fund this year as part of our Civic Engagement Research Awards. The four faculty member awardees are: Andy Clarno, PhD, Associate Professor & Associate Head Coordinator of the Policing in Chicago Research Group, Department of Sociology & Black Studies; April Jackson, MUP, M.Arch, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Urban Planning and Policy; Delphine Labbé, PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Disability and Human Development; and Phillip A. Boda, PhD, Assistant Professor, Bridge to Faculty Scholar, College of Education: Department of Special Education. We look forward to the profound insights and contributions of their work.

IPCE and our researchers completed and delivered the Second Community Survey Report for the Independent Monitoring Team for the ongoing Chicago Police Consent Decree, led by Maggie Hickey. This survey asked about overall police services, effectiveness, community engagement, responsiveness, trustworthiness, and procedural justice, contact and interactions with the CPD, misconduct complaints and investigations, and confidence in reform.

IPCE and our researchers also completed and delivered the Consultant Report: Community Recommendations for CPD Investigatory Stops, Protective Pat Downs, and Searches, led by Consultant Maggie Hickey. The ACLU of Illinois, the City, and CPD are working with an Independent Consultant, Maggie Hickey, to help CPD improve its policies, training, and practices for stops and pat downs. Maggie Hickey invited IPCE to lead and facilitate the co-design plan and present a summary report of key findings and themes from a citywide community-led process to engage community members’ perspectives on stops and pat downs.

I would also like to acknowledge that this year marks the 15 year anniversary of the Institute for Policy and Civic Engagement. It is our pleasure to continue the mission the Institute was founded on, as we work to further transform democracy through research, democratic education, and engagement. 

Please keep us on your radar as we continue to announce upcoming IPCE and IPCE-sponsored events and initiatives, and bookmark our website for updates on all things about the Institute!

Have a wonderful start to your new year,

Joseph K. Hoereth, PhD