The Center for Active Design (CfAD) is pleased to announce the release of original research findings from the Assembly Civic Engagement Survey (ACES), the first study to examine specific community design features that influence civic life, using large-sample survey methods and visual experiments.
ACES captured data from over 5,000 respondents across the U.S., representing a diverse cross-section of economic conditions, demographics, and population densities. The survey inquired about respondents’ civic perceptions and behaviors, as well as design elements and maintenance conditions within their communities—generating a trove of data to measure and analyze relationships between characteristics of place and civic life. The study also incorporated an innovative photo experiment technique to explore the causal impacts of design elements on civic perceptions.
ACES findings are organized across three main topics: park design and maintenance; neighborhood order and disorder; and welcoming civic spaces and buildings. The publication uses infographics, photos, and illustrations to translate findings from sophisticated econometric models into an accessible, easy-to-use resource for local implementers and decision-makers. Highlights include:
ACES findings will serve as a cornerstone in shaping the overarching Assembly initiative—inspiring research questions for future experiments, and informing the development of the forthcoming Assembly design guidelines, scheduled for publication in 2018.