The American Sociologist

, Volume 38, Issue 3, pp 288–293 | Cite as

Communicating Research to Policymakers

  • Ronald C. WimberleyEmail author
  • Libby V. Morris


This piece offers suggestions based on some things we expected to learn and from some things we did not expect to learn about communicating research to congressional policymakers. Some of these are insider discoveries from working as a professional staff member for a joint committee of the US Senate and the US House of Representatives. Other things we learned came largely as surprises from attempts to provide basic information and issue awareness about socioeconomic conditions in the Southern Black Belt directly to the Congress as well as indirectly through public interest and grassroots groups. One of the surprising discoveries, working professionally both on the inside of Congress and on the outside as social scientists, is how well social interaction actually works. And there were other surprises as well.


Communicating research results Southern Black Belt Congress Policymakers Grassroots groups Interest groups 


  1. Wimberley, R. C., Morris, L. V., & Bachtel, D. C. (1991). Agriculture and life conditions in the Land-Grant Black Belt: Past, present, and policy questions. In: N. Baharanyi, R. Zabawa, A. Maretzki, & W. Hill (eds.), Public and private partnership for rural development (pp. 33–48). Tuskegee University.Google Scholar
  2. Wimberley, R. C., Morris, L. V., & Bachtel, D. C. (1996). The Southern Black Belt in National Perspective. Poster/map. North Carolina State University.Google Scholar
  3. Wimberley, R. C., & Morris, L. V. (1997). The Southern Black Belt: A National Perspective. TVA Rural Studies.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Sociology and AnthropologyNorth Carolina State UniversityRaleighUSA
  2. 2.The University of GeorgiaAthensUSA

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