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The National Community Survey™ Report

The City of Cedar Rapids has conducted The National Community Survey™ (The NCS™) every other year, in 2016, 2018 and 2020. Using scientific survey methods, the survey is designed to provide information about how the city government is serving residents, to gauge perceptions of the City, and to make comparisons with peer cities. The survey centers on community livability and includes questions about the quality of life in the community, local policies, demographics, rating of local government services and resident use of services. The City plans to conduct ongoing surveys every two years in order to track trends, gauge citizen perceptions, and solicit feedback.

Survey results measure public perceptions and areas of interest for residents. Overall results for 2020 showed positive ratings and marked improvements since the first survey conducted in 2016 in a number of important categories.

“Cedar Rapids tends to receive strong ratings across all facets of community livability, and the 2020 survey was no exception,” said Jade Arocha, Senior Research Analyst with the National Research Center. “Most items on the survey received ratings similar to those observed in prior years. Ratings related to affordability and employment in Cedar Rapids were particularly strong, with several of these exceeding national averages."

City Council and staff utilize the results of the survey to help with future visioning and goal setting.

View the results:

2020 Livability Report

About The National Community Survey™:
The City of Cedar Rapids contracted with National Research Center, Inc. to participate in The NCS™, an instrument that was developed in partnership with the International City/County Management Association (ICMA) in 2001 to provide cities with a low-cost, high-quality method to conduct market research.

The National Community Survey™ (The NCS™) was among the first scientific surveys developed to gather resident opinion on a range of community issues, and has been used in more than 350 jurisdictions across 46 states. The NCS™ is a high-quality cost-effective scientific survey of resident opinion and an important benchmarking tool that allows for comparison among communities. Communities using The NCS™ have reported that the tool helped improve performance, strengthen communications with community stakeholders, and identify clear priorities for use in goal and budget setting.

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