ON THE AGENDA | NOVEMBER 11TH, 2016 | Public Agenda

Engaging Ideas - 11/11

A collection of recent stories and reports to make you think about how to make progress on divisive issues.

Every week we curate stories and reports on complex issues. This week: Looking forward towards a democracy that works for everyone. Horserace polling, the tempting treat that missed the mark. How to talk politics with your enemy, plus what the election means for health care, K12 and higher education policies.


Toward a Democracy that Works for Everyone (On the Agenda)
Public Agenda President Will Friedman comments on the 2016 election and our work moving forward: We stand more committed than ever to doing our part to build a democracy that works for everyone.

Here’s how the next president can start healing America. (Huffington Post)
Dan Glickman, Former Congressman and Secretary of Agriculture and a Senior Fellow at the Bipartisan Policy Institute, writes: The public should not tolerate four more years of gridlock, no matter who wins on November 8. So what should the next White House administration and the 115th Congress do to rebuild its standing in the eyes of the American people? First, the next president should create a cabinet with a diversity of political views to represent both the left, right and middle.

Public Opinion/ Polling

Update: Horse Race Polling: Resist the Sweet Treat (Medium)
PA alumna Amber Ott writes: In the aftermath of yesterday's election, we are reminded what happens when the horse race? - even when scrutinized using sophisticated technology, big data and modeling? - overshadows everything else. As we wrote in February, polls are not designed to be predictive. They capture a moment in time, and things can happen between a survey and election day, including a shift in the electorate itself. Uncovering the values that underlie candidate preference is what makes public opinion research meaningful. Effective campaigns use this information to craft coherent strategies. Today, many wish we better understood the forces that propelled Mr. Trump to victory. Going forward, let’s dedicate ourselves not just to understanding these forces but also communicating the right and wrong ways to use public opinion research.

7 experts try to explain how the polls missed Donald Trump’s victory (Vox)
Trump drew many new believers into the political process for the first time; the likely voter screens appear to have assumed that they would not actually show up to vote on Tuesday. As a result, polls with strong likely voter screens may have underestimated his strength. Trump’s victory was missed by basically everybody in the polling industry. And that sets up a question: How did the pollsters so badly whiff on an election with such high stakes? The dust is still settling, but I talked to seven experts in political science and polling for their responses. Here’s what I learned.

Community Engagement

Watch: How to Talk Politics With Your Worst Enemy (Whom You Love) (Only Human)
Chuck and Brenda disagree about pretty much everything. When they got married, most of their friends didn’t expect them to last longer than two years. They’ve now been together through four decades and seven different presidents. How’d they do it? They admit their own flaws. Brenda makes a killer lasagna. And they both know that neither Hillary Clinton nor Donald Trump will be changing their diapers when they’re 90.

How to Persuade the Public to Care About Other People's Problems (Governing)
A communications expert reveals the most effective ways, and the results may surprise you.

K-12 Education

Teachers’ responses to feedback from evaluators: What feedback characteristics matter? (Institute of Education Sciences)
Structural equation modeling analysis suggests that in responding to feedback, teachers’ perceptions of the usefulness of the feedback and the credibility of their evaluator could be more important than their perceptions of the accuracy of the feedback and their access to resources.

Principals Work 60-Hour Weeks, Study Finds (EdWeek)
The first national study of principals' time use finds that school leaders clock long hours—and many of them are spent on paperwork.

Higher Education & Workforce Development

Can-Do-Hub: The GitHub of Competencies (The New England Journal of Higher Education)
Imagine having a GitHub profile of competencies. An employer could immediately, visually take in the depth of a candidate’s profile in different areas—both her foundational skills as well as her other technical skillsets. What if we could click on that darker colored square in the grid and immediately view artifacts from the candidate’s past experiences that best illustrate that competency? Or, in other cases, we might see that a company or institution validated that particular competency. A profile of competencies with the visual impact of a GitHub profile would make immediately clear to employers a candidate’s capacity and potential.

Commentary: Leading Transfer Efforts: Two-Year and Four-Year Leaders Need to Collaborate to Succeed (The EvoLLLution)
Recently, a faculty chair shared that it suddenly occurred to him that we (community colleges) don’t offer our transfer degrees on our own but on behalf of the universities to which our students transfer, based on the university’s requirements. This was an epiphany to that senior faculty member who never considered that our programs and courses should align with the course guides of the university that awards the baccalaureate degree, that majors and transfer degrees (AA and AS) didn’t stand alone.

Is Neuroeducation the Key to Online Retention? (eCampus News)
Neuroeducation indicates that by helping students regulate their thinking and performance, institutions will be poised to mitigate the diminishing retention rates of online students.

New and Returning Governors and Higher Ed (Inside Higher Ed)
This table lists the winning gubernatorial candidates in Tuesday's elections and their pledges on higher education. Candidates with an asterisk were incumbents.

Health Care

No Affordable Care Act? Health Insurers Weren’t Expecting That (The New York Times)
More than 100,000 Americans rushed to buy health insurance under the Affordable Care Act on Wednesday, the biggest turnout yet during this year’s sign-up period, the day after the election of Donald J. Trump, who has promised to repeal the law. The figure, announced by the Obama administration, added to a sense of whiplash about the law, and underscored the magnitude of any change. Despite all the criticisms about the law coming from President-elect Trump and his allies, millions of people now depend on it for coverage.

The 2016 Election Reveals The Differences On Health Care Are Deeper Than Ever (Health Affairs)
What have we learned about our collective health future over the past 18 months and what might this mean for our health system’s future?

Middle-Class Americans Face Biggest Strain Under Rising Obamacare Costs (NPR)
Last month, officials announced health care costs under the Affordable Care Act are expected to rise 22 percent. Rachel Martin speaks with Lindsay Travnicek, an Arizona woman who may forgo coverage.

What's become of doctors? (Crain's New York)
Thirty years ago, more than three in four doctors owned their practices. In New York today, about one in four do. What happened? Crain's tells the story with mini profiles of six doctors and how they have adapted to survive.


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