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Web Survey Bibliography

Title An innovative open source strategy for the development of electronic questionnaires for statistical surveys
Year 2009
Access date 22.11.2009

This study is about an innovative strategy totally based on open

‐source software for the implementation of electronic questionnaires for statistical surveys. In this case, the term “electronic questionnaires” is referred to the wider one of CAI questionnaires that can be used for any data collection mode: data‐entry for paper and pencil interviews, CAPI, CATI and CASI. ‐entry mode to the most complex one of CATI mode. ‐house, an ad‐hoc product based on XML ‐server web application where: the form created with XML represents the client process; the RDBMS ‐ data storage and the data retrieving ‐ represents the server process; AJAX framework represents the client‐server communication. ‐ that are typical of the data collection phase that includes analysis, collection, control, storage and transmission of data. The full paper will thoroughly describe the innovative strategy and provide some examples of its applications.

It is well known that in the survey process the data collection technique has a great influence on the questionnaire design in terms of questions wording and structures, interview flow and in terms of checks on data. This strategy aims at fulfilling any level of technical and methodological requirements that belong to the different data capturing techniques. In other words, it is aimed at implementing any “programming tool” that stays behind an electronic questionnaire: from the simplest one used for data

The proposal of this strategy is the result of a previous study aimed at evaluating the potentialities of already existing open source products in implementing Istat electronic questionnaires which are very complex in terms of skipping and checking rules. We were searching for software that could offer a reduction in license costs still guaranteeing high levels of efficiency and usability quite similar to those offered by the commercial software we are currently using for our surveys.

These open source products were not able to satisfy these needs because all of them were suitable to implement simple questionnaires with linear path among the different sections and with none or very few checks on data and between variables. As a consequence we had to think of an alternative solution to our problem and we designed and developed, in

(eXtensible Markup Language) technology, AJAX infrastructure and Relational Database theory. It is a client

We believe this strategy can well balance the needs of cost reduction and high quality levels because it is based on new open source technologies that are quite flexible and permit to simplify the complexity and heterogeneity – in terms of instruments and professional profiles

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Year of publication2009
Bibliographic typeConferences, workshops, tutorials, presentations