Toronto Metropolitan University
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Conducting international online surveys: Trials, tribulations, and suggestions for success

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journal contribution
posted on 2023-01-24, 17:09 authored by Margareth Santos Zanchetta, Kateryna MeterskyKateryna Metersky, Marcelo Medeiros, Walterlânia Silva Santos, Christian Mésenge, Moussa Issa Lessa

In the context of the need for the production of knowledge in low-and middle-income countries, as well as in high-income countries with their socially vulnerable populations and the  concomitant,  minimal  availability  of  funding  for  international  research,  university researchers should innovate. This paper discusses critical methodological issues in the process of designing and implementing international online survey research. This is done in the context of responding to the need for innovation in the research methodology and research design in the field of global health. The focus is ondata collection instrumentation to expand their  responsiveness  to  the  international  field  and  the  participants’  characteristics.  The chapter is organized with the presentation of online international research, first presenting insights for an alternative and innovative design, then formulating questions to remotely collect  international  data  highlighting  survey  methods,  renewing  a  dialogue  setting,  and exploring  issues  of  recruitment, attrition,and  participation.  It  also  reports  successful experiences  of  the  internationalization  of  research,  intellectual partnerships,and  shared successes in the process of creating, exchanging,and translating knowledge in the context of global  health  and  the  democratization  of  knowledge.  The  experiences  are  related  to qualitative inspired research implemented in the continental sphere (Africa, South and North America,  and  Europe)  with  the  creation  of  survey questionnaires  for  an  exploration  of narratives, experiences, and decisions. The mobilization of researchers’ social and professional networks, in addition to the constant reformulation of intellectual partnerships in research, istoday the most common strategies to face the current challenges in academia. Innovation for methodological advances in audacious design for unpredictable fieldwork may require the revisiting  of  epistemological  grounds.  Emerging  issues  in  this  type  of  research,  such  as “research fatigue”, should be considered.




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