How to obtain valid inference under unit non-response?

L. Boeschoten, Gerko Vink, Joop Hox

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Abstract

Weighting methods are commonly used in situations of unit nonresponse with linked register data. However, several arguments in terms of valid inference and practical usability can be made against the use of weighting methods in these situations. Imputation methods such as sample and mass imputation may be suitable alternatives, as they lead to valid inference in situations of item nonresponse and have some practical advantages. In a simulation study, sample and mass imputation were compared to traditional weighting when dealing with unit nonresponse in linked register data. Methods were compared on their bias and coverage in different scenarios. Both, sample and mass imputation, had better coverage than traditional weighting in all scenarios.
Imputation methods can therefore be recommended over weighting as they also have practical advantages, such as that estimates outside the observed data distribution can be created and that many auxiliary variables can be taken into account. The use of sample or mass imputation depends on the specific data structure.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)963–978
JournalJournal of Official Statistics
Volume33
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

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