Public Opinion Research Can Inform Improved Political Party Responsiveness To Citizens

For Immediate Release

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Dhaka – Today, over 100 political party leaders and civil society representatives convened at a national conference on public opinion research to learn how population-based surveys can be used to promote democracy and help leaders be more responsive to their citizens. Political researchers from the United States, Indonesia, and Bangladesh shared their experiences using this important research tool. The Democratic Participation and Reform (DPR) program, implemented by Democracy International and co-funded by the United States Agency for International Development and UKAid, organized the conference.

Paul Sabatine, USAID/Bangladesh Deputy Mission Director quoted the great American leader Abraham Lincoln in his closing remarks and said, “If Bangladeshi social and political leaders truly want to get done what the people desire to have been done, they all need to conduct proper researches to find out what exactly people want.”

The DPR is a five-year, $10 million program that aims to help political parties in Bangladesh to be more inclusive, informed, and responsive to citizen interests.

The U.S. Government, through USAID, has provided over $6 billion in development assistance to Bangladesh since 1971. In 2012 alone, USAID provided more than $200 million to improve the lives of people in Bangladesh. USAID supports programs in Bangladesh that: promote democratic institutions and practices, expand food security and economic opportunity, improve health and education services, and increase resiliency to climate change through adaptation and low carbon development.