Methodology: questionnaire

The questionnaire of the European Quality of Life Survey covers a broad spectrum of life domains with an emphasis on income and financial situation, education, housing and local environment, family relations, work, health, work-life balance, subjective well-being, social participation, quality of social services and quality of society.

The questionnaire, in common with previous edition of the EQLS, was reviewed and improved in close cooperation with the Social Science Centre (WZB) questionnaire development group. While the priority was to retain core questions to enable time series and trend analysis, a certain number of new areas were identified where the survey’s scope could be usefully extended (e.g. quality of local environment, mental health, attitudes toward migrants).

New questions introduced were, wherever possible, based on questions already successfully used in other similar national surveys. In the case of certain background variables such as education level, occupation and net household income, more adjustments have been made in order to increase the quality of analytical variables and contribute to the enrichment of analytical possibilities.

The draft version of the master questionnaire was tested in the pilot survey. The pilot survey was conducted from 7th to 15th July 2007 in the United Kingdom and the Netherlands, with 100 interviews in each country. The results from the pilot survey were subsequently analysed in order to detect any problematic items, especially those resulting in non-response.