Year of Publication



Martin School of Public Policy and Administration

Date Available


Degree Name

Master of Public Administration

Committee Chair

Dr. Iuliia Shybalkina

Executive Summary

What are the underlying motivations which may have an effect on voter turnout in Lexington? In June 2020 the nonprofit organization CivicLex conducted a round of online surveys of Lexington residents in order to gauge how to increase levels of civic knowledge and civic participation in Lexington. This project utilized this survey data, Census data, and 2020 election data to study the effects of age, engagement and trust in Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government, familiarity with their District Councilmember, and education on city council and presidential turnout. I created scatterplots to see if there are any correlations between these variables and turnout in Lexington. The data suggests possible negative correlation between turnout and age, trust, and race. There may also be positive correlation between turnout and engagement in LFUCG and familiarity with one’s District Councilmember. The relationship between education and city council turnout seems to be negative, but looks positively related with presidential turnout. It is also important to note that the relationships across all 6 variables with city council turnout seem to be stronger than the relationships with presidential turnout. There are a few limitations to this capstone project. Data collected through an online survey may not be generalizable. Additionally, the survey did not ask for individual voting behavior. I used district-level turnout data and individual-level survey data in this project. The number of responses gathered from each council district varied widely. For example, District 12 had 8 responses while District 5 had 127 responses. Finally, the survey did not ask respondents which council district they lived in but did ask which zip code they lived in. To assign each respondent to a specific council district, I devised a method of assigning zip codes to council districts based on the number of voting precincts within each zip code and which council district seat they vote for.



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