ERIC Number: ED156371
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978-Feb
Reference Count: 0
Perception of Community Problems by Rural Residents and County Leaders: Implications for Citizen Participation.
Jacob, Nelson L.; Lilley, Stephen C.
Two problem identification surveys conducted to support Extension Community and Resource Development programs in South Carolina's rural Williamsburg County focused on some implications for citizen involvement in public decision making, specifically in rural community development. A 1975 survey of 41 leaders and 1976 citizen survey of 214 rural households showed differences in perception of priority problem areas great enough to warrant inclusion of citizens' surveys as a component in community decision making. Due to differences in survey methodology and time, rankings of specific items were not compared; however, industry and jobs, health care and medical facilities, and recreation were topics of concern on both surveys. To gauge attitudes and behavior relating to public involvement, citizens were asked the extent of their involvement and attitude toward public expenditures. Data indicated a distinction between citizen involvement (few had been directly involved with solving identified problems by serving on committees, as leaders, or by openly supporting public officials) and participation (a somewhat larger proportion would pay additional taxes to have someone else solve problems). Educational programs are needed to clarify functions of citizen participation and appropriateness of various strategies, though periodic problem identification surveys were offered as essential components of citizen participation programs. (RS)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Clemson Univ., SC. Dept. of Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: South Carolina (Williamsburg County)
Note: Paper presented at the Rural Sociology Section of the Southern Association of Agricultural Scientists Annual Meeting (Houston, Texas, February 1978)