Publications

Does more balanced survey response imply less non-response bias?

Recently, various indicators have been proposed as indirect measures of non-response error in surveys. They employ auxiliary variables, external to the survey, to detect non-representative or unbalanced response. A class of designs known as adaptive survey designs maximizes these indicators by applying different treatments to different subgroups. The natural question is whether the decrease in non-response bias that is caused by adaptive survey designs could also be achieved by non-response adjustment methods. We discuss this question and provide theoretical and empirical considerations, supported by a range of household and business surveys. We find evidence that more balanced response coincides with less non-response bias, even after adjustment.