Surveys and Social Research

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					           Surveys and Social
           Research

Young Persons’ Attitudes Survey 2008
Why surveys?
   ‘Information capitalism’
      Vast amounts of information collected
         on all of us for range of purposes
      Daily ‘polls’ on issues ranging from the
         serious to the ridiculous
      When can data be trusted?
Who wore it best?




                    From Heat Magazine
                    website


                    Kruger         38%
                    Dion           62%
Recent examples
 Latest Mori Opinion Poll
    2,063 adults Vote intention: 34% Cons,
    42% Labour, 15% Lib Dem
 Poll for Newsnight
    1,012 adults Agree 51% Disagree 46%
 Telephone poll by The Sun Newspaper
    95,000 responses Bring back death
    penalty – 99% agree
Which is most reliable?
   Issues
      Sample size

      Representativeness
      Question wording
Size matters….
   …..but not as much as you might think
   Sample sizes and associated errors
         500 => +/-4.4%
       1,000 => +/-3.1%
       5,000 => +/-1.4%
      10,000 => +/-1%

   Does not matter how large the population is!
Representative?
      How was the survey collected?
        Random sample?
        ‘Opt-in’, self-selection?
        In the street?
        Face-to-face?
        Telephone?
        Mail back?
        Online?
Non-response
   Is the survey biased?
       Who didn’t respond?

   How to deal with non-response
     Only possible if there is a sampling
           frame
     Weight data
     Impute answers
Our Survey
   Young Person’s Attitude Survey
     NOT random
     NOT representative
     NOT reliable
   Useful
     How did you go about answering?
     Did you have to think or were answers
       spontaneous?
     Ambiguous questions?
Results
   All questions taken from existing surveys
     Mori Opinion Poll (~2,000)
     British Social Attitudes (~1,000)
     British Household Panel Study (~8,000)
  Comparison with adult responses
 Remember our results not necessarily
  representative of young people as a
  whole!
Politics and Voting I
 70
                                                                                  Adults (Mori)
                                                                                  Young People
 60



 50



 40



 30



 20



 10



  0
                 Satisfied




                                                                      Satisfied
                             Dissatisfied




                                                                                  Dissatisfied
                                            Don't Know




                                                                                                 Don't Know
      …the way the Government is running                 …the way Mr. Brown is doing his job as
                 the country?'                                     Prime Minister?
Politics and Voting II
 45

                                                                          Adults (Mori)
 40


 35
                                                                          Young People

 30


 25


 20


 15


 10


  5


  0
        Conservative




                                       Lib Dem




                                                   Nationalists




                                                                  Green




                                                                                  Other
                       Labour




                                Voting intention
Most important issue in Britain0   5   10   15   20   25     30


 Race relations/immigration

      Crime/Law and Order

                       NHS

     Defence/foreign affairs

                 Education

                   Housing

                  Economy

                Drug abuse

                   Taxation

                   Morality
                                                           Adults (Mori)
            Unemployment
                                                           Young People
                   Pollution
Issues in Society: Immigration
 70

                                                                                                  Adult (BSA)
 60
                                                                                                  Young People
 50



 40



 30



 20



 10



  0
                     Neither




                                                         Neither




                                                                                              Neither
             Agree




                                                 Agree




                                                                                      Agree
                               Disagree




                                                                   Disagree




                                                                                                        Disagree
      …immigrants are good for            …immigrants bring in new            …every adult should carry
            economy                          ideas and cultures                     an ID card
Issues in society: Family life
 80

                                                                        Adult (BHPS)
 70
                                                                        Young
                                                                        People
 60



 50



 40



 30



 20



 10



  0

                  Agree      Neither   Disagree                Agree     Neither   Disagree

      Single parent can bring up children as well   Family life suffers when the woman has a
                     as a couple                                    full-time job
Education I
90

                                                                           Adult (BSA)
80

                                                                           Young People
70



60



50



40



30



20



10



 0

     prepare young people for       teach basic skills    bring out natural abilities
               work
                                State secondary schools
Education II
100


 90                                                                                                     Adult (BSA)
 80
                                                                                                        Young
 70                                                                                                     People

 60


 50


 40


 30


 20


 10


  0
                      Neither




                                                           Neither




                                                                                              Neither
              Agree




                                                   Agree




                                                                                      Agree
                                Disagree




                                                                     Disagree




                                                                                                          Disagree
      University education isn't           More advantages than paid            University leaves many
       worth time and money                         more                                 debts
Time Use I
              Less
 Leisure



              Same                                               Young
                                                                 People
              More
                                                                 Adult
                                                                 (BSA)
              Less
 Friends




              Same
              More


              Less
 Family




              Same
              More


              Less
 Job/School




              Same
              More


                     0   10   20   30   40   50   60   70   80
Leisure Activities
 100

                                                                           Adult (BHPS)
  90


  80
                                                                           Young People

  70


  60


  50


  40


  30


  20


  10


   0

             Play       Watch live sport     Cinema     Concert/Theatre   Meal out
       sport/walk/cycle
                                  At least once a month...
About you
   Young Persons’ Attitude Survey
     Male           39%
     Female         61%

     Yorkshire
              and Humberside   19%
     South West               14%
     Other                    67%
Surveys and Social Research
   Surveys used by wide range of groups in
    society
       Government (Census, Labour Force Survey)
       Newspapers (Opinion polls)
       Media (Voting shows)
       Market research (Who buys what, where and
        when)
       Social research
Social Research
   Key features/differences between social
    research and other forms
       Not for commercial gain
       Theoretically guided
       Understand attitudes/behaviours
       Inform policy and wider debates
       Strict codes of practice and ethics
Social Research
   Examples from UPTAP programme
     ‘Being a Muslim in Europe’
     ‘Social and Political Trust’
     ‘Cohabitation: Attitudes, intentions and
       behaviour’
     ‘Geographies of Happiness and Well-being’
     ‘Employment and Cardiovascular Risk’


   More details www.uptap.net