Role of Faith-Based and Community Organizations in Providing Relief and Recovery Services After Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Survey Weights

12/20/2008

Survey weights are sometimes needed to analyze survey data. Most survey weights first adjust for unequal probability of selection that is often built into the sample design, and then adjust for key differences between the sample population and target population, which can help reduce the potential for nonresponse bias.

For this study, finding organizations that were open and operating was actually a larger issue than nonresponse. Given the dramatic changes that occurred in the sample region because of the hurricanes, it is unrealistic to assign probabilities of selection to the organizations we were sampling. Likewise, creating target population control totals is also not realistic given how many organizations we were unable to contact, definitional issues, and relatively small sample size in some of our sampling strata. Therefore, for this study the analysis was done without survey weights and the analytical results should not to be used to make population estimates.

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