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Eldin Fahmy and Karen Bell

Fahmy and Bell discuss their use of paradata generated when collecting data for the UK Poverty and Social Exclusion Survey (2012 PSE-UK). The authors use the experience of collecting these data as a basis for identifying means of improving the quality of survey design. They argue that the use of paradata, in this case the analysis of actual interviewer and respondent interactions, can better improve survey design than the more traditional approach of survey pre-testing. The chapter focuses on the area of behaviour coding which is a technique used to identify issues affecting questionnaire administration that stem from the behaviours of the respondents and the fieldworker. Using an example from the 2012 PSE-UK, Fahmy and Bell show how paradata collected from interview transcripts can provide survey designers with valuable information enabling the identification of problems with questions and so helping to improve future survey design and enhance the quality of data collected in survey–based research.