Other Group

Center for Inclusive Democracy (CID)

Website:

cid.usc.edu/

Location:

Sacramento, CA

Formation:

2010

Type:

Research Center

Project:

University of Southern California (USC) Sol Price School of Public Policy

Center for Inclusive Democracy (CID) (formerly known as California Civic Engagement Project) is a project of the University of Southern California (USC) Sol Price School of Public Policy that engages in political research on American elections and voting demographics. [1]

It is primarily concerned with relatively low voter turnout rates among “low income and migrant communities” as well as “communities of color,” and aims to use political data as a tool to increase electoral participation among these segments of the population. [2]

Background

Center for Inclusive Democracy was founded by political sociologist Mindy Romero in December 2010. At that time, the project was called California Civic Engagement Project (CCEP) and was a part of University of California, Davis. Romero conceived of the project to harvest data on the “voting disparities” and engagement levels among “low-income and migrant communities, as well as communities of color” and use it to increase their voter turnout rates. [3]

Activities

In 2012, CID released its first research report, “Disparities in California’s Vote-By-Mail Use. Changing Demographic Composition 2002-2012” which analyzed the use of mail-in ballots by different segments of the population. It discovered that Latino Americans used vote-by-mail less than Asian-Americans, young people use it less than older citizens, and Democrats less than Republicans. It called for action in response to these findings, such as ensuring that ballots sent to Asian immigrants are in their native languages to reduce “disparate impacts.” [4] [5]

In 2014, CID delivered a presentation to policymakers at the California State Capitol. In 2016, the group launched a report series on the Voters Choice Act, a bill that allowed counties in California to “modernize” elections by expanding vote-by-mail among other programs. [6] [7] CID also released the “Mapping California’s Politically Vulnerable Communities” in collaboration with California Secretary of State’s Office in 2016. [8]

In 2018, the Center moved from UC Davis to University of Southern California (USC) Sol Price School of Public Policy and was renamed “Center for Inclusive Democracy.” It reconceived its mission to be not merely increasing civic engagement in California but also providing research on “communities of color” and their “disenfranchisement” nationally. [9]

CID teamed up with UnidosUS in 2018 to conduct a research report series called “Strength of the Latino Vote.” CID and its director, Mindy Romero, have become known as go-to sources on the Latino vote in America, as well as the youth vote. [10]

Ballot Return Tool

For the 2020 general election, CID expanded a data tool that mapped suggested locations for election officials and “community advocates” to place voting locations and improve voter outreach that it had previously used in 2018 exclusively in California to nine additional states. It introduced a “Ballot Return Tool” that made tallies of voting at the precinct level in real-time in Los Angeles County and later deployed the tool in Georgia for its U.S. Senate run-off elections in January 2021. [11]

CID has stated that it plans to expand the use of this data tool to future elections in more states and counties across the U.S. It also plans to conduct research into automated voting registration, vote-by-mail, early voting, conditional voting, and data analysis on the relationship between socioeconomic status and voting behavior. [12]

Leadership

Mindy Romero is the founder and director of Center for Inclusive Democracy. She is also a fellow of the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC). She holds a Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of California, Davis. [13]

References

  1. “History & Milestones.” Center for Inclusive Democracy, USC.edu. Accessed October 31, 2022. https://cid.usc.edu/history. ^
  2. Center for Inclusive Democracy. USC.edu. Accessed October 31, 2022. https://cid.usc.edu/. ^
  3. “History & Milestones.” Center for Inclusive Democracy, USC.edu. Accessed October 31, 2022. https://cid.usc.edu/history. ^
  4. “History & Milestones.” Center for Inclusive Democracy, USC.edu. Accessed October 31, 2022. https://cid.usc.edu/history. ^
  5. “Disparities in California’s Vote-by-Mail Use.” UC Davis, Issue Brief #1 March 2014. Accessed October 31, 2022. https://static1.squarespace.com/static/57b8c7ce15d5dbf599fb46ab/t/58e58499e4fcb5fc935614c6/1491436758841/VBM+Issue+Brief+Revised.pdf. ^
  6.  “History & Milestones.” Center for Inclusive Democracy, USC.edu. Accessed October 31, 2022. https://cid.usc.edu/history. ^
  7. “California Voter’s Choice Act.” Sos.ca.gov. Accessed October 31, 2022. https://www.sos.ca.gov/voters-choice-act. ^
  8. “History & Milestones.” Center for Inclusive Democracy, USC.edu. Accessed October 31, 2022. https://cid.usc.edu/history. ^
  9. “History & Milestones.” Center for Inclusive Democracy, USC.edu. Accessed October 31, 2022. https://cid.usc.edu/history. ^
  10. “History & Milestones.” Center for Inclusive Democracy, USC.edu. Accessed October 31, 2022. https://cid.usc.edu/history. ^
  11. “History & Milestones.” Center for Inclusive Democracy, USC.edu. Accessed October 31, 2022. https://cid.usc.edu/history. ^
  12. “History & Milestones.” Center for Inclusive Democracy, USC.edu. Accessed October 31, 2022. https://cid.usc.edu/history ^
  13. “Mindy Romero.” Public Policy Institute of California. Accessed October 31, 2022. https://www.ppic.org/person/mindy-romero/. ^
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Center for Inclusive Democracy (CID)


Sacramento, CA