Cutting Turf Made Easy!

Working as a campaign field organizer is hard work, and while it’s often rewarding as NGP VAN points out, it is also filled with time consuming tasks. Figuring out where to send your staff of volunteers is probably the duty that takes the longest. Cutting turf, as it is known, can take hours. NGP VAN is a DC based privately owned company that helps out the DNC.

Say Goodbye to Cutting Turf

Distributed Canvassing is a new program designed to shave hours off the process of figuring out walk lists and staring at maps. Now organizers can spend their time doing the work they really want to do- effecting change in their communities.

The NGP VAN program changes the workflow for the better. It allows you to program the amount of doors you want knocked on and how many staff members or volunteers are in the field. It then cuts the turf for you, distributing each list of homes to the canvasser based on their location.

How it Was Developed

The DNC came up with a program called Knock 10 in 2017 and NGP VAN Distributed Canvassing helped develop the application. The point of the app was to simplify the process of getting people more involved in voter outreach. Once the app was downloaded, it would point out the nearest 10 registered voters in the vicinity of the canvasser.

Distributed Canvassing fine tuned the NGP VAN app, allowing field organizers more leeway in cutting turf. This has opened the doors for more activists to get involved and hopefully stay involved too.


Campaign organizers have had nothing but praise so far. They love the amount of time saved though they are concerned about training staff in its proper use. They also are hesitant in trusting it for certain types of turf, since obviously not all neighborhoods are the same, and nor are the canvassers all professionals. Developers have taken this feedback into account and the NGP VAN team is fine tuning the program.

Distributed Canvassing is currently in beta testing and is available now.

Watch videos on these tools on NGP VAN youtube channel:


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