RRU students trying to find what makes Colwood tick

  • May. 31, 2011 7:00 p.m.

How would you make your city a better place?

Colwood residents are being asked this and a handful of other questions in an online survey to help inform municipal policy decisions around climate change issues and lowering the community’s carbon footprint. But some of the questions read more like something you’d fill out on a matchmaker website than standard survey.

One section, for example, asks the respondent to rank how friendly and outgoing they consider themselves, and another part wants to know if they’re happy, open-minded and living a healthy lifestyle.

“We’re trying to get at core values,” explained John Kirbyson, a Royal Roads University student administering the survey as part of his course work for a graduate certificate in sustainable community development.

“Ultimately meeting sustainability targets is about trade-offs and compromise, and your willingness to do that depends on your values,” he said.

In the month since he created the survey and started promoting it on the web, Kirbyson says the response rate has been underwhelming, with only 40 completed at last check. He’d like to get back at least 100.

“The more surveys filled out, the more accurate and meaningful data we’re able to collect from them,” he says, noting that he’d originally planned to end the survey June 1 but extended the deadline by a couple weeks in hope of attracting more responses.

Kirbyson and his classmates will provide a report of recommendations to Colwood city council and staff by the end of July as their end of term project.

With a mix of multiple choice and open ended questions, as well as some optional demographic questions, the anonymous survey takes about 10 minutes to fill out. Find it online at www.jitsulab.com/197/0026.


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