Constructing Questionnaires to Maximize Construct Validity: Lessons and Challenges From a Cross-National Survey of Nongovernmental Organizations


In 2014, I administered a large-scale, international survey to migrant- and refugee-focused nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) in every country of the European Union in order to study how these NGOs engage in political influence, both domestically and supranationally. In this case study, I present an account of how the survey questionnaire was designed to measure political activity. I discuss the concept of construct validity and recount how key theoretical constructs were translated into questionnaire items and subsequently assessed using confirmatory factor analysis. In addition, I discuss the key lessons learned and offer practical recommendations based on this research study.

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