Trust in surveys and the respondents' susceptibility to item nonresponse

Stocké, Volker ; Stark, Tobias

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URN: urn:nbn:de:bsz:180-madoc-26017
Document Type: Working paper
Year of publication: 2006
The title of a journal, publication series: Rationalitätskonzepte, Entscheidungsverhalten und ökonomische Modellierung
Volume: 06-06
Place of publication: Mannheim
Publication language: English
Institution: School of Law and Economics > Sonstige - Fakultät für Rechtswissenschaft und Volkswirtschaftslehre
MADOC publication series: Sonderforschungsbereich 504 > Rationalitätskonzepte, Entscheidungsverhalten und ökonomische Modellierung (Laufzeit 1997 - 2008)
Subject: 300 Social sciences, sociology, anthropology
Subject headings (SWD): Deutschland , Umfrage , Vertrauen , Schätzung , Meinung
Keywords (English): attitudes toward surveys , cross-national survey research , don’t knows , item nonresponse , question refusal , respondents’ cooperation
Abstract: We test the hypothesis that respondents with a strong attitude that surveys in general cannot be trusted are more susceptible to item nonresponse. This is done separately for the don’t know and refusal rate observed for subjective and factual questions. In a comparative perspective, using data from the ten new member states of the European Union, we firstly find substantial between-country and sociodemographic differences in all four types of nonresponse. A series of negative-binomial regressions shows secondly that lacking trust in surveys significantly increases the rate of unanswered questions, but this negative effect is restricted on the subsample of respondents who consistently reported this attitude in multiple questions. This is equally the case for don’t knows as well as refusals on subjective as well as factual questions. Thirdly, the between-country differences in nonresponse rates are only partly due to the national samples, having differently strong faith in surveys.
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