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Data quality in telephone surveys and the effect of questionnaire length: a cross- national experiment


  • Roberts, Caroline
  • Eva, Gillian
  • Allum, Nick
  • Lynn, Peter


Respondents in long telephone survey interviews may adopt satisficing strategies as they approach the end of the questionnaire (Holbrook, Green and Krosnick, 2003). However, there is inconsistency regarding the relationship between questionnaire length and different forms of satisficing. We investigate whether long questionnaires are associated with a reduction in response quality using data from a cross-national survey experiment. Sample members were randomly assigned to interviews of 60, 45 or 30 minutes. We compare responses to attitudinal measures from a module on happiness and well-being, which was asked at different points in the interview in each of the three groups.

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  • Roberts, Caroline & Eva, Gillian & Allum, Nick & Lynn, Peter, 2010. "Data quality in telephone surveys and the effect of questionnaire length: a cross- national experiment," ISER Working Paper Series 2010-36, Institute for Social and Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:ese:iserwp:2010-36

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    1. Jäckle, Annette & Roberts, Caroline & Lynn, Peter, 2006. "Telephone versus face-to-face interviewing: mode effects on data quality and likely causes: report on phase II of the ESS-Gallup mixed mode methodology project," ISER Working Paper Series 2006-41, Institute for Social and Economic Research.
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    Cited by:

    1. Lynn, Peter, 2013. "Longer interviews may not affect subsequent survey participation propensity," Understanding Society Working Paper Series 2013-07, Understanding Society at the Institute for Social and Economic Research.
    2. Andrew Dabalen & Alvin Etang & Johannes Hoogeveen & Elvis Mushi & Youdi Schipper & Johannes von Engelhardt, 2016. "Mobile Phone Panel Surveys in Developing Countries," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 24595.

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