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The feasibility of conducting a web survey using Respondent Driven Sampling among transgenders in the Netherlands.

*Joost Kappelhof, The Netherlands Institute for Social Research/SCP 

Keywords: RDS, CAWI

Respondent Driven Sampling (RDS) combines the efficiency of snowball sampling with the fundamental prerequisite from the sampling theory that every element in the target population has to have a known chance greater than 0 to be included in the sample using network theory and Markov processes (Heckathorn, 1997, 2002).

This combination makes RDS ideal for conducting (survey) research among hidden populations. It is efficient and it allows for sample based estimates for the population provided several assumptions are met (Wejnert & Heckathorn, 2007).

In the Netherlands transgenders are seen as a hidden population. Commissioned by the Dutch government the Netherlands Institute for Social Research/SCP conducted a survey among transgenders in the Netherlands using RDS. We opted for web interviews (CAWI) since there are several large advantages of using CAWI such as the increased fieldwork speed, reduced survey costs and the absence of interviewer effects on topics with a perceived high risk for social desirability. This presentation discusses the results and the feasibility of using RDS-CAWI among transgenders in the Netherlands.

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