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Wednesday 15th July, 11:00 - 12:30 Room: L-102

Factorial survey experiments

Convenor Dr Edurne Bartolome Peral (University of Deusto )

Session Details

Experimental designs, and factorial surveys in particular, have become very popular in the study of social relations and social processes in the last years. Factorial Survey consits in presenting repeated hypothetical situations, containing a number of variations,which respondents need to judge or decide on. In addition to the situation, key information on respondents is also collected and analyzed.

As the topics and contexts covered by this methodology are also growing very fast, many issues regarding application, topics, problems, particular groups or samples etc. arise during the process of such researches.

The main aim of this session is to share and present:

1.- Different applications of this methodology in social sciences

2.- Improvements and challenges of the use of the methodology in specific contexts or situations.

3.- Pariticularities of this methodology in dealing with specific groups

Paper Details

1. Decomposing the Deteminants of (Dis)Trust in Outgroups in Germany and Spain: Results from an Experimental Design using the Factorial Survey
Dr Edurne Bartolome Peral (University of Deusto)

The purpose of this paper is to decompose empirically the impact of different factors or theoretical determinants of trust and distrust on outgroups. Factors, such as color of skin, occupation, denomination or SES will be tested empirically in two different european settings. To analyse this, we use factorial survey.This experimental design carried out among population from the cities Bilbao and Cologne consists in judging varying descriptions (vignettes) of fictitious persons acting in an previously defined situation. Multilevel analysis measures the impact of characteristics described in the vignettes and impact of respondent characteristics on on trust can be estimated simultaneously.

2. Feasibility of the Factorial Survey Method in Ageing Research: Consistency Effects Among Older Respondents
Mr Andrea Teti (Institute of Medical Sociology, Charité, Berlin)
Dr Christiane Gross (University of Erlangen-Nuremberg)

This contribution evaluates whether the FS method is suitable for studying decision situations in gerontological research. It draws on data from the HOME study, which investigated residential mobility in old age. Respondents aged between 55 and 90 years were asked to make hypothetical relocation decisions. The main finding is that the FS method can, under certain methodological conditions, be used among older adults. Very old adults, who are otherwise often excluded from complex assessments, can thus indeed be surveyed by means of the FS method, especially when the topic of the survey is relevant to their daily lives.

3. The factorial survey and its application in developing countries: effect of age and education
Mr Francisco Olivos (Centre for Social Conflict and Cohesion Studies)

In this article, the cognitive evaluation of factorial survey is evaluated whit general population in Chile, Latin America. It use data of a study about judgment of happiness (N=2056), in where the respondents evaluated 8 vignettes with 8 dimensions that describe persons for sex, age, couple, family, income, health, life style and social mobility. The evaluation of vignette was how much happy or unhappy is each person in base to her features in a scale between -5 and 5.

4. On External Validity of Multifactorial Survey Experiments. Comparing fictional bonus payments, awarded by employers and first semester-students
Dr Knut Petzold (Department of Sociology, CU Eichstätt-Ingolstadt)

The study asks for the importance of the sampling strategy at the individual level for the external validity of survey experiments. A factorial survey (CAWI) on hypothetical bonus payments to fictitious employees is applied on two fundamentally different samples of participants. The first sample consists of genuine employers, for whom the created decision situation is realistic and well assessable. The comparison sample consists of first semester-students of a German university without any experience in human relations. The results reveal no substantial differences in both the level of bonus payments as well as decision rules according to which bonuses are.