Open Conference Systems, ITACOSM 2019 - Survey and Data Science

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Mind the mode: lessons from a web survey on household finances
Andrea Neri, Romina Gambacorta, Martina Lo Conte, Manuela Murgia, Roberta Rizzi, Francesca Zanichelli

Building: Learning Center Morgagni
Room: Aula 210
Date: 2019-06-05 04:20 PM – 06:00 PM
Last modified: 2019-05-23


Surveys on household income and wealth are generally carried out through personal interviews. In recent years, the Internet has been increasingly used as a data collection method, for both economic reasons and for the timeliness with which the collected data become available. To the best of our knowledge, however, there are not many studies on the use of the web for collecting information on household income and wealth. This work helps to fill this gap by illustrating the results of an experimental survey conducted in 2016 by the Banca d’Italia in collaboration with Istat (the Italian National Institute of Statistics). Data quality is assessed using fiscal administrative data and by comparison with a parallel survey conducted through personal interviews. Our results suggest that the web can represent a valid alternative for qualitative questions and for gathering information on less sensitive sources of income (such as those for employees and retirees). To reduce the bias associated with the use of this instrument, it is essential to have auxiliary information on the total selected sample.

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