Within the context of survey research, key informant refers to the person with whom an interview about a particular organization, social program, problem, or interest group is conducted. In a sense, the key informant is a proxy for her or his associates at the organization or group. Key informant interviews are in-depth interviews of a select (nonrandom) group of experts who are most knowledgeable of the organization or issue. They often are used as part of program evaluations and needs assessments, though they can also be used to supplement survey findings, particularly for the interpretation of survey results. Key informants are chosen not because they are in any way representative of the general population that may be affected by whatever issue is being studied, but ...

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