Study: Despite crime, national perceptions of N.O. are mostly po - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports, Social

Study: Despite crime, national perceptions of N.O. are mostly positive

New Orleans struggles with the perception that the city has fewer job opportunities compared to the rest of the country. (FOX 8 Photo) New Orleans struggles with the perception that the city has fewer job opportunities compared to the rest of the country. (FOX 8 Photo)
NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) -

The results of a study released Wednesday find the national perceptions of New Orleans after Katrina are mostly positive.

The study is funded by Chevron.

Greater New Orleans, Inc. released Bridging the Perception Gap: Results of National Opinion Survey. GNO, Inc. commissioned Lake Research Partners to conduct the study in late 2014 to understand how the rest of America views New Orleans through their thoughts on doing business here, moving here and quality of life. The results provide information on if and how city improvements since Katrina are resonating around the country. The study, which has been conducted since 2010, allows for analysis of perception trends over time.

The survey was conducted in November 2014 in six target media markets – Atlanta, Austin, Chicago, Los Angeles/San Francisco, New York and Washington, D.C. More than 1,800 registered voters were surveyed around the country. A survey of over 400 voters in the New Orleans media market were also polled to gauge local impressions.

Among the findings, from the GNO Inc. news release:

Respondents across the country's seven major media markets have strong and deeply rooted positive perceptions of New Orleans as a center of unusual culture and diversity, as well as having impressive resilience and strength of character. These associations transcend geography and are durable; the positive images of the city are only growing from previous years.

For a significant number of respondents (more than four in 10), these perceptions are informed in part by first-hand experiences gleaned from visits to New Orleans. Respondents' positive associations with New Orleans outweigh the negative, translating into a real willingness to consider relocating under the right circumstances. Fully four-in-ten voters in these media markets would consider moving to New Orleans.

New Orleans struggles with the perception that the city has fewer job opportunities compared to the rest of the country, especially among respondents with college degrees. 42% of respondents say there are fewer opportunities in New Orleans than in other places around the country, up from 38% in 2012.

However, the impact of recent tragedies on New Orleans' image has been profound, elevating concerns about susceptibility to disaster and subpar quality of life. Moreover, significant perceptions gaps exist around the economic climate and the abundance of quality jobs and business opportunities. However, strategic messaging shows the potential to neutralize these concerns and make real gains across the board. Crime and corruption are concerns for local residents, but are far less pronounced associations outside of New Orleans Respondents with young children had higher negative perceptions about quality of life than those without; Locals had a much brighter outlook on quality of life The results of this study will guide GNO, Inc.'s regional public relations committee as it works to prepare for the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.

To view the full study, click here: gnoinc.org/perceptionstudy.

Copyright 2015 WVUE. All rights reserved.

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