Do Mobile Phone Surveys Work in Poor Countries?

December 06, 2016 by Benjamin Leo, Robert Morello, Jonathan Mellon, Tiago Peixoto, Stephen T. Davenport

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In this project, we analyzed whether mobile phone-based surveys are a feasible and cost-effective approach for gathering statistically representative information in four low-income countries (Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Mozambique, and Zimbabwe). Speci cally, we focused on three primary research questions. First, can the mobile phone survey platform reach a nationally representative sample? Second, to what extent does linguistic fractionalization affect the ability to produce a representative sample? Third, how effectively does monetary compensation impact survey completion patterns?