Another geography of turnout? Respondents and non-respondents to the 2005 British Election Study
An issue of growing concern in studies of voting patterns using survey data is the falling response rate achieved by face-to-face surveys. The 2005 British Election Study (BES) pre-campaign survey achieved interviews with 55.6 per cent of the 6450 individuals sampled – a drop of nearly 20 percentage points over the average for the surveys undertaken in the 1960s and some 15 points over those in the 1970s. Of the addresses selected, no contact could be made at 5.8 per cent, the individuals selected at a further 26.0 per cent refused to be interviewed, 4.4 per cent were otherwise unproductive and 8.0 per cent of the addresses were ‘out of scope (deadwood)’. To what extent does this failure to reach a very substantial minority of the addresses selected have any impact upon the results of the sample survey and the conclusions drawn therefrom?
British Election Study
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