Do Demographic Profiles of Listed and Unlisted Households Differ? Results of a Nationwide Telephone Survey
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A growing number of households are not reachable through traditional directory-based samples, which can have important implications for the representativeness of telephone surveys. The current study aims to investigate the demographic differences between households which have their telephone numbers listed or not listed in the Australian White Pages telephone directory. A total of 5,023 eligible Australian residents who were currently in paid employment participated in this study. Each respondent’s telephone number was individually matched to the residential White Pages to determine its listed status, and demographic variables were compared between those with a listed and unlisted telephone number. Those with an unlisted number were significantly more likely to be younger, to have been born in a country outside of Australia, and to live in a lower socioeconomic area than those who were listed in the White Pages. These demographic differences should be considered when undertaking telephone surveys using a White Pages sample.
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