Report | Aug 1, 2016
Moving Without Changing Your Cellphone Number: A Predicament for Pollsters

By Meredith Dost and Kyley McGeeney Each year about 36 million Americans move residences, according to the Census Bureau. And they quite often take their cellphone numbers with them. Others have not moved but bought their cellphone in a different state. The net result, according to new Pew Research Center estimates, is that 10% of […]

Short Read | Jun 16, 2016
In the age of big data, survey research will not only survive but thrive

The next frontier of public-opinion research is already visible in the “big data” revolution. Through the digital traces of our everyday activities, we are creating a massive volume of information that can tell us a lot about ourselves. Smart data science can identify patterns in our behaviors and interests. And in some domains, such as […]

Short Read | Jun 3, 2016
The challenges of translating the U.S. census questionnaire into Arabic

In 2020, census questionnaires may for the first time be offered in Arabic, now the fastest-growing language in the U.S. But the Census Bureau faces a challenge not only in translating the language but also in adjusting the appearance of the questionnaire for those accustomed to reading and writing Arabic script.

Short Read | May 11, 2016
The challenges of polling Asian Americans

Why aren’t Asian Americans shown as a separate group when differences among whites, blacks and Hispanics are discussed in survey reports? It's a good question, so we put together a summary of some of the methodological and other issues on accurately polling U.S. Asians.

Report | May 2, 2016
Evaluating Online Nonprobability Surveys

Online nonprobability surveys are fast, cheap, and increasingly popular. We compared nine samples and found that accuracy varied substantially.

Short Read | Apr 28, 2016
Census Bureau hopes to use data from other government agencies in 2020

Anyone who has filed a U.S. tax return, applied for a Social Security number or signed up for Medicare has given personal data to the government. So when the Census Bureau counts the American public, can it use the information that other federal agencies have already collected?

Short Read | Mar 10, 2016
Many Americans say they voted, but did they?

One-in-six (16%) of those who say they “definitely voted” in the 2014 midterm election have no record of voting in commercially available national voter files.

Report | Feb 24, 2016
Data Quality Deserves an Honest Discussion

While the possibility of falsified data is an important consideration in survey research, a new tool to detect it fails to perform as advertised.

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Signature Reports

Mar 31, 2017
Are Telephone Polls Understating Support for Trump?

An experiment comparing responses to 27 questions fielded on both a telephone and a web survey found no significant mode differences in overall opinion about Trump or many of his signature policy positions.

Features

Feature | Jul 16, 2019
Methods 101 Video: How is polling done around the world?

International polling provides information about how people in different countries are thinking about issues like immigration, technology, religion, you name it. But polling in different parts of the world can be very challenging, because what works in one country may not work in a different country.

Feature | May 14, 2018
Video: Can we still trust polls?

Recent events – including the 2016 presidential election and Brexit – have rattled public confidence in polls. But this video explains why well-designed polls can still be trusted and remain an important way to measure public opinion.

Feature | Mar 21, 2018
Methods 101 Video: Survey Question Wording

The second video in Pew Research Center’s Methods 101 series helps explain question wording – a concept at the center of sound public opinion survey research – and why it’s important.

Feature | May 12, 2017
Methods 101 Video: Random Sampling

The first video in Pew Research Center’s Methods 101 series helps explain random sampling – a concept that lies at the heart of all probability-based survey research – and why it’s important.