Norman Marshall Bradburn

National Opinion Research Center
Behavioral scientist; Educator; Academic administrator
Leadership, Policy, and Communications
Scientific, Cultural, and Nonprofit Leadership

Norman M. Bradburn, the Tiffany and Margaret Blake Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus, serves on the faculties of the Harris School, the Department of Psychology, the Graduate School of Business, and the College. He is a former provost of the University (1984–1989), chairman of the Department of Behavioral Sciences (1973–1979), and associate dean of the Division of the Social Sciences (1971–1973). From 2000–2004, he was the assistant director for Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences at the National Science Foundation. Bradburn is currently a senior fellow at NORC at the University of Chicago.  Associated with NORC since 1961, he has been director of NORC and president of its Board of Trustees.

A social psychologist, Bradburn has been at the forefront in developing theory and practice in the field of sample survey research. He has focused on psychological well-being and assessing quality of life, particularly through the use of large-scale sample surveys; non-sampling errors in sample surveys; and research on cognitive processes in responses to sample surveys. His book, Thinking About Answers: The Application of Cognitive Process to Survey Methodology (co-authored with Seymour Sudman and Norbert Schwarz; Jossey-Bass, 1996), follows three other publications on the methodology of designing and constructing questionnaires: Polls and Surveys: Understanding What They Tell Us (with Seymour Sudman; Jossey-Bass, 1988); Asking Questions: A Practical Guide to Questionnaire Construction (with Seymour Sudman; Jossey-Bass, 1982; 2nd edition with Brian Wansink, 2004) and Improving Interviewing Method and Questionnaire Design (Jossey-Bass, 1979).

He is the Principal Investigator for the Humanities Indicators Project of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.  He has recently completed a large survey of the arts and culture building boom from 1998-2008 and published Building Better Arts Facilities: Lessons from a U.S. National Study (with Joanna Woronkowicz and D. Carroll Joynes; Routledge, 2015).

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