Private but Misunderstood? Evidence on Measuring Intimate Partner Violence via Self-Interviewing in Rural Liberia and Malawi

42 Pages Posted: 31 Jan 2024

See all articles by David Sungho Park

David Sungho Park

KDI School of Public Policy and Management

Shilpa Aggarwal

Indian School of Business (ISB), Hyderabad

Dahyeon Jeong

World Bank

Naresh Kumar

UC Santa Cruz

Jonathan Robinson

University of California, Santa Cruz

Alan Spearot

University of California, Santa Cruz

Date Written: December 29, 2023

Abstract

Women may under-report intimate partner violence (IPV) in surveys. We conduct an experiment in rural Liberia and Malawi in which women were asked IPV questions via self-interviewing (SI) or face-to-face interviewing (FTFI). Many women appear to misunderstand questions in SI, and we find significant effects of SI on innocuous placebo questions. Because the prevalence of IPV is typically well below 50%, such measurement error will tend to bias IPV reporting upwards. Indeed, we find that SI significantly increases reported incidence of IPV (by 13 percentage points in Malawi and 4 percentage points in Liberia), but we cannot rule out that these increases are spurious.

Note:

Funding Information: US-AID and IPA.

Conflict of Interests: None to declare.

Ethical Approval: The research protocol for this study was approved by the IRBs of UCSC, the University of Liberia, and the Malawi National Committee on Research in the Social Sciences and Humanities (NCRSH).

Keywords: intimate partner violence (IPV), measurement, ACASI, sensitive behaviors

JEL Classification: C93, O12, J16, I32

Suggested Citation

Park, David Sungho and Aggarwal, Shilpa and Jeong, Dahyeon and Kumar, Naresh and Robinson, Jonathan and Spearot, Alan, Private but Misunderstood? Evidence on Measuring Intimate Partner Violence via Self-Interviewing in Rural Liberia and Malawi (December 29, 2023). KDI School of Pub Policy & Management Paper No. 23-15, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4703386 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4703386

David Sungho Park (Contact Author)

KDI School of Public Policy and Management ( email )

P.O. Box 184
Seoul, 130-868
Korea, Republic of (South Korea)

Shilpa Aggarwal

Indian School of Business (ISB), Hyderabad ( email )

Hyderabad, Gachibowli 500 019
India

Dahyeon Jeong

World Bank ( email )

1818 H Street, NW
Washington, DC 20433
United States

Naresh Kumar

UC Santa Cruz ( email )

Santa Cruz, CA 95064
United States

Jonathan Robinson

University of California, Santa Cruz ( email )

1156 High St
Santa Cruz, CA 95064
United States

Alan Spearot

University of California, Santa Cruz ( email )

1156 High St
Santa Cruz, CA 95064
United States

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