About The Survey

The 2020 Survey on the Future of Government Service is a non-partisan survey about the backgrounds, experiences and policy views of federal executives. Academic, non-profit, and government partners will use data from the survey to better understand the public service. The survey includes questions about hiring, performance, management, and reform. Data from the survey will supplement existing government-wide data sources (e.g., Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey) and facilitate evidence-based decision making on the future of public service in 2020-21.

Survey Team

The survey is a collaborative scholarly effort sponsored by the Partnership for Public Service, the Princeton School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University, the Center for the Study of Democratic Institutions at Vanderbilt University, and Georgetown University. The Princeton Survey Research Center will administer the survey under the supervision of Drs. Mark D. Richardson (Georgetown University), Nolan M. McCarty (Princeton University) and David E. Lewis (Vanderbilt University). Dr. Edward Freeland and Naila Rahman direct the day-to-day operations of the Princeton Survey Research Center.


We have contacted approximately 20,000 federal executives using information from the online version of the Federal Yellow Book. This sample includes Senate-confirmed appointees, non-career and career members of the Senior Executive Service, members of the Senior Foreign Service, Schedule C appointees, senior career professionals running agencies and programs, and other comparable managers.


The survey is scheduled to begin June, 2020 and will include an electronic survey and a paper survey for those who do not prefer the electronic interface.