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ISR News Releases

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March consumer confidence: Income Growth Key to Expanding Consumer Sales

April 1st, 2016

ANN ARBOR—Despite small monthly variations, the overall level of consumer confidence has remained largely unchanged over the past three quarters, according to the University of Michigan (U-M) Surveys of Consumers. This stability has resulted from increased optimism about personal finances…

Elderly woman in a wheelchair with an elderly man looking at her lovingly.

Older women lose much of their advantage in living active lives

March 17th, 2016

ANN ARBOR—In a reversal of a long-standing pattern, a new study shows that older women in the U.S. have lost ground relative to older men in the number of years they can expect to live free from disabilities past age…

Marvin Parnes, photo by Lee Ridley

Marvin Parnes, Managing Director of ISR, retires

March 7th, 2016

After 41 years of distinguished service at the University of Michigan, Marvin Parnes has retired. Parnes was Managing Director of the U-M Institute for Social Research, a position he held from 2013 through the end of February. “With all of…

Diverse Hands Holding Colorful Speech Bubbles

Assessing new ways to measure public opinion

March 1st, 2016

With costs for scientific sample surveys soaring and response rates falling, a growing number of analysts are turning to social media data to gauge public opinion. But are Tweets and Facebook posts really as accurate as traditional surveys and polls?…

University of Michigan Surveys of Consumers logo

February consumer confidence: Will inflationary psychology prove friend or foe?

February 26th, 2016

ANN ARBOR—Consumer confidence has remained largely unchanged in the past few months, with the February reading barely different than last month (-0.3 percent) or three months ago (+0.4 percent), according to the University of Michigan (U-M) Surveys of Consumers. The…

Voters at a Polling Station

Voting restrictions stir anger, mobilize more Democrats to polls

February 25th, 2016

ANN ARBOR—In recent years, many states have passed laws that make it more difficult for people to register and vote. But while these laws may be disenfranchising some minority voters—many of whom support the Democratic Party—they also may be having…

Light output in India 1993 - 2013.

Electricity in India: Many still live in darkness

February 9th, 2016

ANN ARBOR—India has made progress bringing electricity to its people, but satellite images of the country show that some local governments have exaggerated the success. This is just one of the findings of University of Michigan researcher Brian Min, who…

University of Michigan Surveys of Consumers logo

January consumer confidence: Low inflation critical for maintaining confidence

January 29th, 2016

ANN ARBOR—Consumer confidence remained largely unchanged, as the January reading was just 0.6 percent below last month’s level, according to the University of Michigan (U-M) Surveys of Consumers. The small downward revisions were due to stock market declines that were…

Aggression Square

Aggressive behavior more common in children with half- and step-sibs

January 26th, 2016

ANN ARBOR—About one in six U.S. children – more than previously thought – live with half- or step-siblings just before starting kindergarten, according to a new study. And these children behave aggressively more often, on average, than do other children.…

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Negative news about Muslims fuels public policy support against them

January 5th, 2016

ANN ARBOR—News stories depicting Muslims as terrorists have fueled racism and anger among many non-Muslim Americans, who support civil restrictions and military action in Muslim countries, according to a new University of Michigan study. Other research has shown that minorities…

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