The role of e-mail communications in determining response rates and mode of participation in a mixed-mode design

Publication type

Journal Article

Published in

Field Methods


Alexandru Cernat and Peter Lynn

Publication date


This article is concerned with the extent to which the propensity to participate in a web-face-to-face sequential mixed-mode survey is influenced by the ability to communicate with sample members by email in addition to mail. Researchers may be able to collect email addresses for sample members and to use them subsequently to send survey invitations and reminders. However, there is little evidence regarding the value of doing so. This makes it difficult to decide what efforts should be made to collect such information and how to subsequently use it efficiently. Using evidence from a randomized experiment within a large mixed-mode national survey, we find that using a respondent-supplied email address to send additional survey invites and reminders does not affect survey response rate but is associated with an increased proportion of responses by web rather than face to face and, hence, lower survey costs.

Volume and page numbers

30, 70-87





Open Access; This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 License ( which permits non-commercial use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access pages (

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