New Developments in Survey Data Collection
Posted: 14 Aug 2017
Date Written: July 2017
This review focuses on recent methodological and technological developments in survey data collection. Surveys are facing unprecedented challenges from both societal and technological changes. Against this backdrop, I review the survey profession's response to these challenges and developments to enhance and extend the survey tool. I discuss the decline in random digit dialing and the rise of address-based sampling, along with the corresponding shift from telephone surveys to self-administered (mail and/or Web) modes. I discuss the rise in nonprobability sampling approaches, especially those associated with online data collection. I also review so-called big data alternatives to surveys. Finally, I discuss a number of recent methodological and technological trends designed to modernize the survey method. I conclude that although they face a number of major challenges, surveys remain a robust and flexible method for collecting data on, and making inference to, populations.
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