Best-Friend Reports: an instrument for Measuring the Prevalence of Sensitive Behaviors

S. Yeatman and J. Trinitapoli jointly developed the tool that is best-friend. S. Yeatman developed the concept for the article, performed the analyses, and published almost all of the article. J. Trinitapoli encouraged from the analysis and contributed into the writing regarding the article.


We introduce the methodology that is best-friend making use of studies to gauge the populace prevalence of delicate habits. We prove the potency of this device by comparing self-reports to best-friend reports of intimate abortion and behavior history among young ladies in Malawi (letter = 1493). Best-friend reports reveal higher and much more believable quotes of abortion and numerous partners that are sexual. In contexts for which close friends commonly discuss such actions, best-friend reports are a cheap and simply implemented device.

Survey scientists battle to measure sensitive and stigmatizing actions that are crucial for understanding health threats, habits of infection transmission, and contraceptive need. 1–4 Novel methodological methods to reduce underreporting, including sound computer-assisted self-interviewing and confidential voting practices, have actually had limited success. These procedures can generate greater (and perhaps more accurate 5 ) reports of particular intimate habits and abortion, nevertheless they create reduced reports of other actions and may increase reporting errors. 6–11

To higher estimate the population prevalence of intimate danger behavior and abortion in a residential area in southern Malawi, we administered a study asking a number of questions regarding the actions of this respondent’s friend that is best. This process leverages 2 insights that are sociological. The very first is that friendship sites are homogenous; buddies are generally comparable with regards to sociodemographic traits and habits. 12 the second reason is that social desirability bias needs to have less impact on reports for the stigmatizing or sensitive behaviors of your respective buddies than on self-reports. 13 right Here we present the original outcomes acquired by utilizing this effortlessly implemented approach to review research on painful and sensitive topics. Read more ›

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