Fall 2018: Ballot Initiatives

Fall 2018

Ballot Initiatives

For the fall 2018 semester, our POSC 395 Policy Research Internship students researched the ballot initiative process in California. We partnered with Leslee Sherrill, the Co-Founder of Let the Voters Choose (LVC). She shared this about the project, "This fall, USC students examined and evaluated the effectiveness and transparency of the ballot initiative process. The work of LVC will be greatly enhanced by the findings of this research as we look to rollout a state-by-state effort to empower all voters to make real and significant changes to their election process."

Eitan Fattal shared this about what he gained from his internship experience, "This project taught me to balance normative theories about what direct democracy should achieve with observable facts of what participants in our system of governance actually do with this type of liberty. I learned a lot about the nuances, both good and bad, of government and civic participation."

Project: The Efficacy of Ballot Initiatives

USC Students: Wesley Chen, Eitan Fattal, James Brink, Milo Hammer and Ambika Nuggihalli

Research Question: Is the ballot initiative system an effective method of governance?

Policy Recommendations:

  1. Clean up the Secretary of State’s website
  2. Explaining the rules of voting
  3. Fewer propositions on the ballot
  4. Constitutional amendment
  5. Fact and checked voter guide and advertisements

Read the group's research into the ballot initiative process in California here.

Watch the full video of their presentation here.