Survey Design and the Determinants of Subjective Wellbeing: An Experimental Analysis

38 Pages Posted: 24 Jan 2015

See all articles by Angus Holford

Angus Holford

University of Essex

Stephen Pudney

University of Essex - Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER)

Abstract

We analyse the results of experiments on questionnaire design and interview mode in the first four waves (2008-11) of the UK Understanding Society Innovation Panel survey. The randomised experiments relate to job, health, income, leisure and overall life-satisfaction questions and vary the labeling of response scales, mode of interviewing, and location of questions within the interview. We find significant evidence of an influence of interview mode and question design on the distribution of reported satisfaction measures, particularly for women. Results from the sort of conditional modeling used to address real research questions appear less vulnerable to design influences.

Keywords: survey design, wellbeing, satisfaction, response bias, Understanding Society

JEL Classification: C23, C25, C81, J28

Suggested Citation

Holford, Angus and Pudney, Stephen, Survey Design and the Determinants of Subjective Wellbeing: An Experimental Analysis. IZA Discussion Paper No. 8760. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2554888

Angus Holford (Contact Author)

University of Essex ( email )

Stephen Pudney

University of Essex - Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER) ( email )

Wivenhoe Park
Colchester CO4 3SQ
United Kingdom

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Downloads
51
Abstract Views
268
rank
399,624
PlumX Metrics