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Weighting issues in recreation research and in identifying support for resource conservation management alternativesAuthor(s): Amy L. Sheaffer; Jay Beaman; Joseph T. O'Leary; Rebecca L. Williams; Doran M. Mason
Source: In: Kyle, Gerard, comp., ed. 2001. Proceedings of the 2000 Northeastern Recreation Research Symposium. Gen. Tech. Rep. NE-276. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northeastern Research Station. 183-186
Publication Series: General Technical Report (GTR)
Station: Northeastern Research Station
PDF: Download Publication (318.19 KB)
DescriptionSampling for research in recreation settings in an ongoing challenge. Often certain groups of users are more likely to be sampled. It is important in measuring public support for resource conservation and in understanding use of natural resources for recreation to evaluate issues of bias in survey methodologies. Important methodological issues emerged from a statewide project assessing sport fish consumption patterns of state anglers. The objective of the project was to determine an average consumption rate for fish obtained through recreational fishing. Although two methods were used to reach anglers, a mail survey and an onsite survey, the latter method was subject to participation bias among anglers interviewed in the on-site locations. The most active anglers were more likely to be encountered and interviewed by the survey team. As higher participation levels in fishing are likely associated with more opportunities for catching fish, more active anglers are likely to have higher consumption rates. More active anglers' consumption data would contribute to an estimate of average consumption rate calculation that was too high among anglers interviewed in the on-site locations. Weighting data based on the inverse of fishing participation was necessary to address the participation bias, and sport fish consumption was calculated with weights assigned. Comparison of weighted data with unweighted data is provided. Average consumption rate for active consumers assessed using weighted on-site data was similar to the rate observed for active consumers in the mail survey. Weighting was necessary to calculate an estimate of average sport fish consumption among on-site anglers and to provide information to the funding agency for policy decisions.
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CitationSheaffer, Amy L.; Beaman, Jay; O''Leary, Joseph T.; Williams, Rebecca L.; Mason, Doran M. 2001. Weighting issues in recreation research and in identifying support for resource conservation management alternatives. In: Kyle, Gerard, comp., ed. 2001. Proceedings of the 2000 Northeastern Recreation Research Symposium. Gen. Tech. Rep. NE-276. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northeastern Research Station. 183-186
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