Response Rates in National Panel Surveys

It has been well documented that response rates to cross-sectional surveys have declined over the past few decades. It is less clear whether response rates to longitudinal surveys have experienced similar changes over time. This article examines trends in response rates in several major, national longitudinal surveys in the United States and abroad. The authors find that for most of these surveys, the wave-to-wave response rate has not declined. This article also describes the various approaches that these surveys use to minimize attrition.