Handbooks of Research Methods and Applications series
Edited by Frederic S. Lee and Bruce Cronin
Chapter 6: Using survey methods in heterodox economic research
Survey methods aim at gathering and interpreting information about a specific population under study. These methods are rarely conducted in mainstream economic research. Fortunately, they are relatively more common in heterodox economic research. When properly implemented, they offer a productive framework to test and make inferences about concrete economic claims in actual populations. As survey methods allow studying real people, they provide effective research instruments. These methodologies can be used to question mainstream economic propositions and also to make new discoveries, formulate new concepts and theories, and test existing theories in heterodox economics. After contextualizing survey studies, and describing several heterodox economic papers that have used these methodologies, this chapter informs about key questions in research employing survey methods, such as: designing and planning the study, the population_sample relationship, the art of crafting survey questions, the psychology of answering questions, the most-used methods for data collection (mail-based, internet, telephone, and face-to-face based surveys), the survey response rate, the problem of non-response, and the analysis and reporting of findings.
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