8.4 State of Knowledge, Experience, and Training

One segment of the survey was designed to assess the current state of knowledge among the regulator and nonregulator communities and to gain a feel for respondents’ level of experience and training with ISM sampling.

The survey results indicated that USEPA Regions 6, 9, and 10 generally understand and support ISM more than other EPA regions.

Responses to series of survey questions were used to gauge respondents’ level of knowledge and acceptance of ISM. Responses were tabulated and scored, and statistical comparisons were made between groups of respondents. The analysis of the survey results shows that nonregulators were generally stronger proponents of ISM than the other respondent groups. Analysis of the data geographically also shows a stronger level of understanding and support for ISM within USEPA Regions 6, 9, and 10 as compared with other USEPA Regions.

The 2009 survey data indicate that while there is a basic level of understanding of ISM, the level of actual experience with ISM is fairly low. Sixty percent of respondents rated their understanding of ISM concepts as moderate or very good, while nearly 70% rated their level of experience as modest to none.