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Investigating and reducing non-sampling errors on EU-SILC

Background

The European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC) programme involves the collection of standardised data co-ordinated by Eurostat, the statistical office of the EU. Participation is compulsory for all EU member states. In most countries the data are collected entirely through a bespoke panel survey, while in a minority of countries some of the data are collected from registers. Previous research commissioned by Eurostat has studied in detail the sampling error associated with estimates based on EU-SILC data, but little attention has been paid to other sources of survey error.

This programme of research, which constitutes part of the Third Network for the Analysis of EU-SILC (NetSILC3), will investigate the extent and nature of non-sampling errors and will explore ways of reducing such errors in future. Sub-projects will address under-coverage, unit nonresponse and attrition, item non-response, and several aspects of measurement error including external validation of income measures, health measures, and housing measures. The research programme is co-ordinated by ISER’s Professor Peter Lynn and will involve researchers from 12 organisations in nine countries.

Aims

The objectives of the project are designed to identify the main sources of non-sampling errors in EU-SILC, to describe the nature and impact of each type of error, and to produce guidance on reducing them, through a combination of improved data collection practices and post-survey adjustment methods. Recommendations from the project should inform the revision of EU-SILC, as support to the elements to be included in the revised legal basis.

Data Sources

EU-SILC Longitudinal and Cross-sectional files

Team members

Dr Olena Kaminska

Survey Statistician - ISER, University of Essex


Professor Peter Lynn

Professor of Survey Methodology - ISER, University of Essex


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Photo credit: Anthony Cullen