New international research technique "rings the bell" throughout Europe

Date of publication: August 1, 1981

Author: Maurice de Hond

Abstract:

This paper discusses the growth within the Netherlands in recent years of the use of telephone interview methods. This growth mirrors a similar development in the United States of America, where such interview techniques have long been established and their advantages widely recognised. The fact that this technique is now so firmly established in the United States is all to often explained by the high rate of telephone penetration there. This paper suggests that this argument is not necessarily the most valid one. Doubts have also to be expressed as to real representativeness of samples drawn on the basis of 'traditional' face-to-face interviewing methods. A software package, entirely new in Europe, which provides for completely computer-steered telephone interviews via direct terminal entry is described and its advantages in terms of lower costs, better control of standards and greater standardisation and, above all, speed is illustrated. This paper also aims to indicate the potential inherent in this new computer-steered telephone interview technique when it comes to multi- country research projects.

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