Cover

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Title page, Copyright, Dedication

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Contents

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pp. ix-x

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1. Surveys and Representation

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pp. 1-22

What are the duties of a political representative? Several tasks come to mind. We authorize representatives to act on our behalf, to design legislation, to enforce the law, to choose between alternative policies. We also expect political representatives to express our opinions and preferences, to say what we would ...

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2. Who Is Missing?

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pp. 23-38

If we know who's missing, we can assess the descriptive representativeness of surveys. Descriptive representation matters because the distribution of the ideas present in the debate on policy predisposes what kinds of policies are enacted and what interests are furthered. This must be true in a trivial sense: ...

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3. Why Do People Participate in Surveys?

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pp. 39-72

Imagine that you have been selected to participate in a survey. What determines whether or not you agree to answer the questionnaire? The interviewer must first contact you; the interviewer must then determine if you are eligible to participate in the study and capable of answering the questions; and finally, you ...

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4. Structure of Survey Compliance

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pp. 73-92

So far, all we know about the four relationships between the potential respondent and his or her decision to participate in the survey is that these relationships are plausible and a bit about what influences them. This is useful, but ultimately unsatisfying. We need to understand how these relationships work as a whole. ...

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5. How Survey Nonresponse Damages Scientific Research

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pp. 93-126

Legislators are not usually thought to be philosophers of science, but the preceding quotation strikes straight to the problem of nonresponse for scientific research. While their concern about which groups would shy away from surveys on sexual behavior might or might not be correct, nonresponse is a problem ...

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6. Applications of Corrections for Nonresponse

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pp. 127-160

The theme of the last chapter is that survey nonresponse threatens scientific research. In particular, multivariate analyses will be biased if either the dependent variable or the independent variables are related to the causes of nonresponse.1 Is this just playing methodological Chicken Little ("The response rates are falling! ...

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7. What If Nonresponse Worsens?

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pp. 161-180

The nonresponse bias evident in the models of chapter 6 might be too small for some tastes. After all, if the analyst were merely looking for the sign of a coefficient, none of the models displayed a change of sign on statistically significant coefficients. The problem is that nonresponse bias in many surveys may ...

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8. Surveys and Misrepresentation

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pp. 181-196

This book begins with a discussion of the meaning of representation in modern politics. Representation embodies not only people empowered to act on our behalf but also a description of who we are. When we refer to representatives as people entitled to act on our behalf, we refer to the "authorization" sense of representation. ...

Appendixes

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pp. 197-248

References

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pp. 249-258

Index

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pp. 259-266