Consent to Data Linkage: A Focus on the Interviewer Respondent Interaction

Wednesday, July 16, 2014: 11:00 AM
Room: 416
Oral Presentation
Gundi KNIES , Institute for Social and Economic Research, University of Essex, Colchester, United Kingdom
Tarek AL BAGHAL , Institute for Social and Economic Research, University of Essex, Colchester, United Kingdom
Jonathan BURTON , University of Essex, Colchester, United Kingdom
Linkage of survey and administrative records is increasingly popular. The survey respondent’s informed consent is required to perform linkages and a number of studies have documented interviewer effects in the decision to consent. Whilst studies found that 28-34% of the variance in consent outcomes is attributable to interviewer characteristics, many of the characteristics were unobserved. We use experimental data on consent to data linkage collected in wave 4 of the Innovation Panel (IP4) to examine the role of the interviewer-respondent interaction in the decision to consent to data linkage. IP4 included a number of experiments around the way in which consent is asked and respondents were asked for consent to record their interview, see Sala, Knies and Burton (2013). We report results from multilevel models on selectivity in consent using information gathered from coding the interviewer-respondent interaction around the data linkage request. The code frame considered whether the interviewer read out the question as scripted, with minor or major deviations. Deviations from the script considered whether the change in wording may be viewed as biased toward a particular decision. We coded the interviewer-respondent behaviour for all available interviews which allows us not only to examine the prevalence and effect of non-standard interviewer behaviour and how it affects the consent outcome, but also whether these vary across experimental treatment groups in a nationally representative study. Results will contribute to elaborate on Groves and Couper (1998)’s model of survey response into building a theoretical model that explains better the complex processes that lead respondents to consent.