Individual and Neighborhood Determinants of Survey Nonresponse – An Analysis Based on a New Subsample of the German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP), Microgeographic Characteristics and Survey-Based Interviewer Characteristics

47 Pages Posted: 13 Apr 2010

See all articles by Jörg-Peter Schräpler

Jörg-Peter Schräpler

Ruhr University of Bochum - Faculty of Social Science

Jürgen Schupp

German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin); Institute for Sociology, Freie Universität; The Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

Gert G. Wagner

German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin); Berlin University of Technology; German Socio-Economic Panel Study (SOEP)

Date Written: April 1, 2010

Abstract

This study examines the phenomenon of nonresponse in the first wave of a refresher sample (subsample H) of the German Socio-Economic Panel Study (SOEP). Our first step is to link additional (commercial) microgeographic data on the immediate neighborhoods of the households visited by interviewers. These additional data (paradata) provide valuable information on respondents and nonrespondents, including milieu or lifestyle, dominant household structure, desire for anonymity, frequency of moves, and other important microgeographic information. This linked information is then used to analyze nonresponse. In a second step, we also use demographic variables for the interviewer from an administrative data set about the interviewers, and, in a third step, we use the results of a special interviewer survey. We use multilevel statistical modeling to examine the influence of neighborhoods and interviewers on non-contacts, inability to participate, and refusals. In our analysis, we find our additional variables useful for understanding and explaining non-contacts and refusals and the inability of some respondents to participate in surveys. These data provide an important basis for filling the information gap on response and nonresponse in panel surveys (and in cross-sectional surveys). However, the effect sizes of these effects are negligible. Ignoring these effects does not cause significant biases in statistical inferences drawn from the survey under consideration.

Keywords: Nonresponse, interviewer effects, microgeographic data, multilevel modeling, SOEP

JEL Classification: C81, C83

Suggested Citation

Schräpler, Jörg-Peter and Schupp, Juergen and Wagner, Gert G., Individual and Neighborhood Determinants of Survey Nonresponse – An Analysis Based on a New Subsample of the German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP), Microgeographic Characteristics and Survey-Based Interviewer Characteristics (April 1, 2010). SOEPpaper No. 288. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1588730 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1588730

Jörg-Peter Schräpler (Contact Author)

Ruhr University of Bochum - Faculty of Social Science ( email )

Germany

Juergen Schupp

German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin) ( email )

Mohrenstraße 58
Berlin, D-10117
Germany
+49 30 8 978 9238 (Phone)
+49 30 8 978 9109 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.diw.de/deutsch/das_institut/mitarbeiter/innen/26652.html?uid=jschupp

Institute for Sociology, Freie Universität ( email )

Garystr. 55
I
Berlin, D-14195
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.polsoz.fu-berlin.de/soziologie/mitarbeiter/b_hochschullehrer/schupp.html

The Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.iza.org/index_html?lang=de&mainframe=http%3A//www.iza.org/de/webcontent/personnel/fellows

Gert G. Wagner

German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin) ( email )

Mohrenstraße 58
Berlin, 10117
Germany
+49 30 8 978 9290 (Phone)
+49 30 8 978 9200 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.diw.de/programme/jsp/MA.jsp?language=en&uid=gwagner

Berlin University of Technology ( email )

Straße des 17
Berlin, 10623
Germany
+30 8 978 9283 (Phone)

German Socio-Economic Panel Study (SOEP) ( email )

DIW Berlin
10108 Berlin, Berlin
Germany
+49 30 8978 9290 (Phone)
+49 30 8978 9109 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.diw/en/soep

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