Unit nonresponse errors in income surveys: a case study
A survey on the economic and social conditions of households in the city of Modena was carried out in 2002 and in 2006 (two waves) by the CAPP (Centre for Analyses of Public Policies). In the first wave of 2002, each designated sampling unit (i.e., the family) had three units as reserves. If the first refused to be interviewed, the interviewer contacted the three reserves, one after the other, until obtaining either one respondent or four non-participant units. At the end of the survey four categories of units were distinguished: interviewees, refusals, noncontacts, and unused reserves. All units were matched with their corresponding record in the databases of the Ministry of Finance of 2002 and the Census of 2001. The resulting data set permitted the analysis of unit or total nonresponses. The distribution of fiscal income showed different shapes for the four categories, implying a selective participation of the families. The interviewees yielded a positive bias of about 600€, holding constant other factors. The selection of the significant factors affecting nonresponse was performed via backward elimination in a logit model and with the lasso method. Participation increased as fiscal income and age increased and by education level (secondary school and university degree), while it decreased among entrepreneurs, independent workers, managers, and medium-to-low skilled workers. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012
Volume (Year): 46 (2012)
Issue (Month): 6 (October)
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