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Webinar: Cultural Context and Measurement Validity in Comparative Survey Research

When: April 12, 2013


3:00 p.m. EST

Friday April 12, 2013

To register, click here:

This webinar will review challenges and strategies for making valid cross-national comparisons using quantitative surveys. A core problem for comparative survey research is establishing whether a set of survey questions and responses measures the same concepts across various cultural contexts. Asking identical questions provides for uniformity of survey items, but the meaning of responses to identical questions may vary cross-culturally. Using culturally-specific indicators for the same concepts can improve the conceptual equivalence of items, but makes statistical comparisons difficult. Furthermore, response styles vary cross-culturally; for example some groups are more prone to "agreement bias" than are others.

The webinar will use examples from public opinion research in Eurasia to illustrate the issues, and also provide an overview of strategies for improving cross-cultural measurement validity, both during questionnaire design, and through statistical analysis. Participants need not have a background in statistics; references to relevant statistical texts will be provided for those who wish to read further.

The webinar will be led by Dr. Jane Zavisca, associate professor of sociology at the University of Arizona. In addition to a PhD in sociology, she has an MA and postdoctoral training in statistics. She has designed two original surveys in Russia, as well as worked with secondary surveys such as RLMS and GGS.