Project Director, Journalist, Internews Network
Rita Ruduša is a veteran Latvian journalist and editor, former executive director of the Baltic Centre for Media Excellence. She entered journalism in the early nineties, a time of tectonic shifts in European history, and was one of the first foreign correspondents of the newly independent Latvia, working for Diena, the flagship daily and reporting from Moscow. Rita Ruduša has also spent several years in Prague working as a broadcaster at Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, and in London as a media researcher at the Open Society Foundations. She has held several executive positions in Latvian media, including the Latvian Public Television where she was the commissioning editor for news and current affairs. Rita Ruduša is the author of Forced Underground, which documents the lives of LGBTI people in Soviet Latvia, one of the first works on the topic published in a post-communist country.
Can we trust the polls? With polls proliferating in the media and with methodological concerns increasing within the polling industry, caution is warranted. This is not to suggest that the general quality of polling data is declining or that the problems facing pollsters have no answers. Still, consumers of polling data need to be more careful than ever. Something has changed about the way voters are willing to share their preferences with pollsters, even when those opinion polls are conducted anonymously. During this discussion, we will identify what has caused that change and, in particular, the role that ‘trust’ plays in voters’ willingness to reveal their political preferences.