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AAPOR 2009 Interview Wrapup

Topics: AAPOR , AAPOR2009

I'm back in DC and rested, or at least, better rested than I was this time yesterday. As a wrap up to my coverage of this year's conference of the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR), here are links to all of the video interviews (with some final thoughts below):

  • Michael Link, AAPOR's conference chair, provides an introduction.
  • Masahiko Aida on a likely voter validation study conducted by Greenberg, Quinlan Rosner & Democracy Corps.
  • Reg Baker on AAPOR's online panel survey task force.
  • Chris Borick on the whether the "incumbent rule" made a comeback in 2008.
  • Elizabeth Dean on RTI International's efforts to recruit and interview respondents in Second Life.
  • Don Dillman on Address Based Sampling (ABS) and its applications for Internet surveys.
  • Paul Donato on the role of traditional survey research in a world of changing electronic measurement.
  • Tom Guterbock on his research on improving political message testing.
  • Lou Harris recounts experiences working for candidate John F. Kennedy in 1960.
  • Sunshine Hillygus on her study of how primary supporters of Hillary Clinton (and those of other unsuccessful presidential candidates) ended up voting in the general election.
  • Scott Keeter on the perils of pre-election polling in 2008.
  • Jon Krosnick on the challenges in assessing the quality of new survey methods.
  • Jennie Lai of the Nielsen Company on their research into the use of mobile devices for time use surveys.
  • Christopher Wlezien on the work he and Bob Erikson have done on the comparative accuracy of polls and political prediction markets.

A few things to remember about AAPOR's annual conference: First, my interviews barely scratched the surface of the breadth and depth of subjects covered and findings presented. I tend to focus more closely on topics related to pre-election polling, but the conference covered a much wider array of methodological issues. For example, there were by my count eight panels on survey non-response, six on web surveys, and five each on the address based sampling and cell phone interviewing. These tend to be highly technical and not easily conveyed via quick video interview.

Remember also that a lot of the findings presented at the conference -- including some that made their way into these interviews -- are very preliminary. The quality of the "papers" presented at the AAPOR varies widely (and I put that word in quotations because most are just Powerpoint presentations). Only a handful will eventually make their way into academic journals, and those that do are still at the beginning of a long peer review process that may ultimately lead their authors to different conclusions. Some of that review comes in the form of tough questions at the conference that my interviews cannot capture.

Finally, some words of thanks: First, thanks to o all of those I interviewed for making themselves avalable. Second, a big thanks to Michael Link, the conference chair, and Monica Evans-Lombe and her colleagues at AMP (AAPOR's management company), who helped provide important logistical support. Finally, another big thank you to Lisa Mathias at the Winston Group for creating the animation that appears at the beginning of each video (and her colleague and pollster regular Kristen Soltis for recommending her). Thank you to all!

 

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