DO IMPROVE REPEATED CONTACT ATTEMPTS WITH HARD-TO-GET RESPONDENTS THE ACHIEVED SAMPLE? THE EXAMPLE OF THE EUROPEAN SOCIAL SURVEY 7 IN POLAND
Languages of publication
This paper addresses two questions: 1) Do improve repeated contact attempts with hard-to-get respondents in face-to-face surveys the response rate significantly? 2) Do they improve the sample composition? The data used to answer these questions is taken from the European Social Survey round 7 (2014/15) in Poland. That survey, conducted in accordance with a rigorous research design (highly motivated interviewers, two advance letters, incentives for respondents, repeated contact attempts with hard-to-get respondents etc.) achieved a response rate of 65.8%. The findings from our analysis indicate that repeated contact attempts do improve the response rate by more than 20 percentage points. The initial response rate, calculated for easy-to-get respondents, was merely 45.3%. The final response rate was mostly increased thanks to contact attempts with hard-to-reach respondents whereas refusal conversions played a much smaller role. This finding is in line with the results obtained in other studies. Generally speaking, the results of the analysis presented in this paper suggest that the standard face-to-face survey research design, which assumes no more than two contact attempts with the sampled persons, poses a risk for the representativeness of the achieved sample; certain categories of respondents will be overrepresented while others will be underrepresented. This risk can be considerably reduced thanks to multiple contact attempts. Our analysis demonstrates that repeated contact attempts with hard-to-get respondents bring the benefit not only of an increase in the response rate but also of an improvement in the sample composition.
Publication order reference