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Understanding Society Working Paper Series 2011-04

Maintaining cross-sectional representativeness in a longitudinal general population survey


Publication date

23 Jun 2011


This paper describes the problem of maintaining cross-sectional
representativeness in a longitudinal survey of a changing population. The
extent and nature of the problem is outlined and potential solutions are
described. The procedures adopted on Understanding
Society are described. The main
challenges are to correctly identify members of the initial sample who leave
the population – through death or emigration – and to periodically add
appropriate samples of people who join the population – through birth or
immigration. The samples to be added should have known selection probabilities
and should strike an appropriate balance between precision of estimation and
cost-efficiency of fieldwork.

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