Traditionally, rural Nebraskans have not had a strong voice in state policy decisions. The Nebraska Rural Poll gathers the aggregated voice of rural Nebraskans and relays its findings to state lawmakers, ensuring the rural voice is heard. The goal of the Nebraska Rural Poll is to give local and state leaders a better understanding of the issues, challenges and concerns of Nebraska's rural citizens. The Rural Poll is an annual effort that focuses on such issues as community, government policy, well-being and work.
Core questions are included every year; over time these core questions will provide insight about trends and changes occurring in rural Nebraska. In addition, each year rural citizens and government officials form an advisory committee that identifies key issues or topics to include in the survey. Poll findings are distributed to member of the Nebraska Legislature, staff members of the state's congressional delegation, and other state and local leaders to facilitate their decision making.
In early April, the Nebraska Rural Poll arrived in mailboxes of residents living all across the state, just has it has each year since 1996. Historically, the poll has been delivered to 7,000 households in the state’s rural areas. This year an additional 7,000 households in the state’s metropolitan areas received the same survey. The Nebraska Business Development Center at the University of Nebraska at Omaha provided the necessary funding to expand the survey to the counties in the Omaha and Lincoln metropolitan areas. This year's questionnaire asked Nebraskans about impacts of the pandemic and trust in media and institutions, as well as the core questions on well-being and community.
View the 2021 Rural Poll and 2021 Metro Poll reports here.