Daniel A. Cox, PhD

Director | @dcoxpolls

Daniel A. Cox is the director of the Survey Center on American Life and a senior fellow in polling and public opinion at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI). Under his leadership, the center is focused on public opinion and survey research, on topics such as religious change and measurement, social capital, and youth politics. Before joining AEI, he was the research director at PRRI (Public Religion Research Institute), which he cofounded and where he led the organization’s qualitative and quantitative research program.

He is also the coauthor of numerous academic book chapters, journal articles, and conference papers on topics relating to religious polarization, anti-Muslim attitudes in the US, religious tolerance of atheists, and new methods for measuring social class and religious belief.

Dr. Cox’s work is frequently featured in the popular press, including in the Atlantic, CNN, and the Washington Post. He is a contributor to FiveThirtyEight and Insider.

Dr. Cox holds a PhD and an MA in American government from Georgetown University, where he focused on public opinion, political behavior, and religion and politics.  Read more.

Kelsey Eyre

Research Assistant | @klehshey

Kelsey Eyre is a research assistant here at American Enterprise Institute (AEI)’s Survey Center on American Life. She received a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Brigham Young University with a minor in Mandarin Chinese.

Kelsey has researched and written about partisan trust, partisan sorting, and the intersection of politics and religion. She assists Dan with public opinion and survey research.

Kyle Gray

Research Assistant

Kyle Gray is a research assistant at AEI’s Survey Center on American Life conducting public opinion research. 

Kyle received a bachelor’s degree in philosophy alongside a minor in Religion from Vassar College. He also holds a Master’s degree in Education Policy from the University of Pennsylvania.

Kyle’s academic interests include philosophy of education, the interplay of secular and religious influences in public life, and civic education and civic virtue.

Kyle brings previous experience in both real estate finance and tall ship sailing, and is an avid outdoorsman.

Beatrice Lee

Research Assistant

Beatrice Lee is a research assistant for Politics and Public Opinion Studies and the Survey Center on American Life at the American Enterprise Institute. She works with AEI senior fellow Daniel A. Cox and visiting scholar Samuel J. Abrams compiling and analyzing polls on a variety of contemporary political and social issues. Before joining AEI, Beatrice worked as a research assistant for Middlebury College, where she developed course material on survey methodology and introductory statistics. She graduated from Middlebury College with a degree in Economics.

Recent Commentary

Former President Donald Trump spoke via video to attendees of the Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition Spring Kick-Off on April 22. Data suggests Trump is weaker among college-educated white evangelical voters than he was in his 2016 campaign. SCOTT OLSON / GETTY IMAGES

Daniel A. Cox, Amelia Thomson-DeVeaux
May 18, 2023

Some Evangelical Voters Aren’t Sold On Trump. Will That Help DeSantis?

White Evangelical Protestants comprise Trump’s base, but cracks are forming along educational and generational lines. What does this mean for 2024?

President John F. Kennedy delivers his famous “We Choose to Go to the Moon” speech at Rice University on September 12, 1962. (Source: NASA)

Daniel A. Cox
April 11, 2023

American Politics Needs a New National Purpose

The United States seems to have lost its way as a country. Americans have generally low regard for our political leaders, little faith in our institutions, and even less in each other. Our politics are defined by acrimony and division. We’ve witnessed a decades-long deterioration in civic life and social solidarity. The erosion of traditional

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - JULY 24: People sit and have a picnic in Washington Square Park during a heat wave on July 24, 2022 in New York City. The five boroughs of New York City are under a heat advisory until 8 PM on July 24th according to the US National Weather Service. Much of the East Coast is experiencing higher than usual temperatures as a heat wave moves through the area forcing residents into parks, pools and beaches to escape the heat. (Photo by Alexi Rosenfeld/Getty Images)

Daniel A. Cox
December 20, 2022

Why Americans are Spending Less Time with Friends — And What to do About it

A full work week. Hours on housework, yard work, time spent with your kids or partner. Then there’s all the time we spend online. Where is the time for friends? Today, On Point: Declining time with friends, increasing loneliness. We hear what to do about Americans’ lost connections.

Four cartoon black hanging lamps on a blue background, one light bulb is not working.

Daniel A. Cox, Brent Orrell
December 16, 2022

Women are More Likely to Make Friends at Work than Men. Here’s Why that Matters

Research shows that the more friends we have, the less likely we are to be depressed or anxious, and work friendships boost productivity and worker retention