Preliminary research started with phone calls to CA-based State Senate offices & environmental organizations.
I then attempted a survey, but recruiting proved too difficult given the limited budget. As a result, the focus shifted to creating personas using data provided by Claritas 360 Zip Code Look-up.
Personas were initially used to conduct A/B testing on social media; however, after the focus of the study shifted, an alternative research methodology was employed.
The final round of research, consisting of semi-structured interviews, provided insight into the behavior of young CA-based voters between the ages of eighteen and twenty-five. As we often say in research, there is no better way to get to get to the bottom of our “why?” questions than to conduct qualitative research.
Dig into each method below:
A survey targeting members of California's 5th, 12th, 14th, 18th, 35th, and 40th Senate Districts was conducted to gain insights into constituents' values, perceptions of climate change, engagement with local policy, knowledge of their State Senate district, and awareness of various environmental groups (see Figure 2, pictured below). However, due to insufficient respondents, an alternative analysis using the feature was conducted. By utilizing the online database, 312 zip codes spanning all six State Senate districts were manually entered into a spreadsheet and cross-referenced with California Demographics' list of California Zip Codes by Population. Click here to reveal a graphic! The next steps investigated the possibility of using the demographic data from the six personas to develop a split test, which would be distributed via Twitter advertising; however, it was ultimately determined that not only would a comprehensive split testing experiment be beyond the scope of this study, but using this method would also fail to answer the primary questions that this research originally intended to explore. Instead, an alternative research methodology, which consisted of qualitative, semi-structured interviews, was used to gain insight into the behavior of young California voters who are between the ages of eighteen and twenty-five. Ten young adults who attended universities located within or close to the above State Senate districts (5th, 12th, 14th, 18th, 35th, and 40th) were recruited via LinkedIn Messaging to participate in 30-minute, semi-structured interviews over the course of a week. Click here to reveal a graphic!
Participants were asked about their knowledge of the California State Senate, the purpose of a State Senate bill, their involvement in previous advocacy work, and their awareness of environmental issues and organizations in California.
Once the interviews were completed, transcripts were uploaded to , a research repository, where they were analyzed using color-coded tags. The interviews resulted in the following primary findings.