Focus Groups with Respondents and Non-respondents to the Survey of Consumer Finances - ARCHIVED

Articles and reports: 75F0002M1992009


There are many issues to consider when developing and conducting a survey. Length, complexity and timing of the survey are all factors that may influence potential respondents' likelihood to participate in a survey. One important issue that affects this decision is the extent to which a questionnaire appears to be an invasion of privacy. Information on income and finances is one type of information that many people are reluctant to share but that is important for policy and research purposes.

Collecting such information for the Survey of Consumer Finances (SCF) has proven difficult, and has resulted in higher than average non-response rate for a supplemental survey to the Labour Force Survey. Given the similarity between the SCF and an upcoming survey, the Survey of Labour and Income Dynamics (SLID), it is important to examine the reasons behind the SCF's higher non-response rate and obtain suggestions for increasing response rate and gaining commitment from respondents to the 6-year SLID.

Statistics Canada asked Price Waterhouse to conduct focus groups and in-depth interviews with respondents and non-respondents to the SCF. The objectives of these focus groups and in-depth interviews were to explore reasons for response and non-response, issues of privacy and confidentiality and understanding of the terms used in the survey, and to test reactions to the appearance of a draft SLID package.

Issue Number: 1992009
Author(s): Staisey, Nancy
FormatRelease dateMore information
PDFOctober 21, 2008