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Web Survey Bibliography

Title Continuous large-scale volunteer web-surveys: The experience of Lohnspiegel and WageIndicator
Author Oez, F.
Year 2012
Access date 30.04.2012

Relevance & Research Question:
Online Surveys has been playing increasingly an important role in the academic research. The Institute of Social and Economic Research (WSI) has been conducting a continuous web survey on pay and working conditions since 2004. Data is collected via an online questionnaire, accessible at, which any interested visitor can complete. Lohnspiegel is a German part of the WageIndicator survey network, which organises web-surveys with a similar structure and content in 50 countries. The topics relate to wages and working conditions. The target population is the labour force, including employees, self-employed, informal workers, job seekers and the unemployed. Volunteer web-surveys are primarily held in marketing and in voting research. Except for the WageIndicator they are hardly used in the field of work and employment. The presentation concentrates on the experiences of the Lohnspiegel and WageIndicator as a continuous web survey and on the recommendations for other academic researchers.
Methods & Data:
The respondents of the web-survey are volunteers. A continuous survey challenges the traditional perception of web-surveys. The survey have several advantages: the potential to generate large sample sizes, the possibility of exploring rare groups or small-scale units, the inclusion of follow-up questions, Additionally, such web surveys offer multiple client-side feedback systems.
Since 2004 over 200.000 participants have completed the online questionary in Germany, with an average of ca. 25.000 per year. The Lohnspiegel is a non-probability survey and the data therefore biased and not representative to a certain extent. Several adjustment procedures to solve this problem have been applied. The results show that application of different weights produces rather diverse results, and that there is no certainty as to whether the representativeness of such web-surveys can be improved.
Added Value:
The experience of a continuous large-scale web-surveys “Lohnspiegel” and “WageIndicator” in general, would give new insights for further academic research and methodology development. The surveys generate longitudinal, multi-country data on wages, which might develop into a worldwide database on wages, benefits, working hours, working conditions, and industrial relations and, hence, contribute to a better understanding of the labour market worldwide.

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Year of publication2012
Bibliographic typeConferences, workshops, tutorials, presentations
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Web survey bibliography - General Online Research Conference (GOR) 2012 (40)