L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs

L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs



Jim Ellis, Ph.D.

Jim Ellis

Director, Survey and Evaluation Research Laboratory

Bowe House, Room 202 Phone: (804) 828-2839 Email: jmellis@vcu.edu


  • Survey research methods
  • Public opinion about K-12 education
  • Employee and organizational surveys


Ph.D., Education, Virginia Commonwealth University

M.S., Survey Methodology, University of Maryland – College Park

M.S., Mass Communications, Virginia Commonwealth University

B.A., English, University of Virginia


Jim Ellis, Ph.D. is director of the Survey and Evaluation Research Laboratory (SERL). Ellis worked at SERL from 1986 to 2007 in various capacities including director of the Technical Division and lead survey methodologist. He joined the Center for Survey Research (CSR) at the University of Virginia in 2007 as director of research, and returned to SERL in 2018 to take on the role of director. Ellis has experience in all aspects of survey design, execution, analysis and reporting. He has led numerous employee surveys; surveys of residents of Virginia localities; surveys of clients of government agencies; semi-structured interviews with decision-makers in Virginia businesses; and focus groups with stakeholders in agribusiness, organ donation and more. His past projects have included ongoing statewide telephone surveys for the Behavioral Risk Factors Surveillance System, mail surveys about school construction needs in Virginia, surveys of high school students about tobacco use and many others.