Propensity to consent to data linkage: experimental evidence on the role of three survey design features in a UK longitudinal panel

Publication type

Journal Article


Publication date

September 15, 2014


When performing data linkage, survey respondents need to provide their
informed consent. Since not all respondents agree to this request, the
linked data-set will have fewer observations than the survey data-set
alone and bias may be introduced. By focusing on the role that survey
design features play in gaining respondents’ consent, this paper
provides an innovative contribution to the studies in this field.
Analysing experimental data collected in a nationally representative
household panel survey of the British population, we find that interview
features such as question format (dependent/independent questions) and
placement of the consent question within the questionnaire have an
impact on consent rates.

Published in

International Journal of Social Research Methodology

Volume and page numbers

Volume: 17 , p.455 -473






© 2014 The Author(s). Published by Routledge. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License licenses/by/3.0/, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. The moral rights of the named author(s) have been asserted.

Open Access article



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