Title

An Empirical-Comparison Of Direct Questioning, Scenario, And Randomized-Response Methods For Obtaining Sensitive Business Information

Title - Alternative

Decis. Sci.

Keywords

QUESTIONNAIRE ANALYSIS; SAMPLING AND SURVEY METHODS; AND STATISTICAL; TECHNIQUES; INTERVIEW; Management

Abstract

Certain business practices include legal but ethically questionable activities. Surveys intended to determine the nature and extent of such activities must employ questioning methods which mitigate the inherent threat of sensitive questions and account for social desirability effects. This study uses a national mail survey of chief executive officers (CEOs) of manufacturing firms to compare the performance of direct questioning, scenario, and randomized response methods for estimating the prevalence of several sensitive business practices. The direct questioning and scenario versions used self-reporting (individual-based) questions, as well as the CEO's perceptions of the extent to which others engage in questionable activities (other-based). In general, the estimates of the prevalence of selected questionable activities were lowest when the individual-based direct questioning was used and highest when other-based (either direct questioning or scenario) methods were used. The individual-based scenario and randomized response estimates represented intermediate estimates. Suggested guidelines for using the three methods for eliciting sensitive information are discussed.

Publication Title

Decision Sciences

Volume

22

Issue/Number

5

Publication Date

1-1-1991

Document Type

Article

Language

English

First Page

1073

Last Page

1090

WOS Identifier

WOS:A1991HA66400006

ISSN

0011-7315

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