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Dissatisfied with Life or with Being Interviewed? Happiness and Motivation to Participate in a Survey

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  • Adrian Chadi

Abstract

Information on the number of interviewer contacts allows insights into how people's responses to questions on happiness are connected to the difficulty of reaching potential participants. Using the paradata of the German Socio-Economic Panel Study (SOEP), this paper continues such research by revealing a strong link between respondent motivation and reported happiness. Analyses of responses by future non-respondents substantiate this finding and shed light on a key question for empirical research on subjective well-being, which is whether the unhappy tend to avoid survey participation or whether the unwilling might respond more negatively when being asked about their satisfaction with life.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) in its series SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research with number 639.

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Length: 33 p.
Date of creation: 2014
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:diw:diwsop:diw_sp639

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Keywords: Happiness; Respondent motivation; Measurement bias; Life satisfaction; Panel attrition; Interviewer contacts;

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References

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