Randomized Response Model
Randomized response model is a research concept that is applied in structured survey interview. The method was originally proposed in 1965 by S.L Warner and later went through modification in 1969 by B.G Greenberg. This model gives respondents the opportunity of responding to sensitive issues like criminal behavior without exposure to third parties. Precisely, randomized response model was purposely developed to protect the privacy of a survey and answer bias.
The decision in this context is by chance since the interview is not aware whether the question is answered truthfully. For instance, social scientists have used it in questioning people whether they use drugs, have telephones that are installed illegally, or whether they have been involved in tax evasion. Before the legalization of abortion, social scientists also used this method in asking women whether they had done abortions. Randomized response model can be an effective tool for seeking accurate answers to sensitive questions which a majority of respondents can be reluctant to answer truthfully.
In Randomized response model, respondents are asked to answer ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ to either the sensitive question of interest or the complementary one given. For example, let us assume that we are interested in determining whether a person belongs to Class X. The respondent uses a chance device for selecting Question 1, ‘’Are you a member of Group X?’’ or Question 2, ‘’Are you a member of Group X2?’’ where X2 is the complement of X. Therefore, if the respondent says ‘Yes’, the interviewer is not sure whether the ‘Yes’ refers to Question 1 or Question2.
The assumption of using the example above is that simple random sampling is used for the generation of the sample and that parameter of interest is 2, the proportion of the population that has been sampled in Group X. When applying this model, the randomized device can be anything; however, it has to have a known probability t that the respondent is asked the sensitive question and probability 1- t that the respondent is asked other questions. Besides, it must also have the probability that the respondent answers ‘Yes’ to the other question is known.
In sampling randomized responses, prior information should be obtained because the randomization significantly causes a reduction on the amount of sample information. The main setback that is usually experienced by researchers while using the randomized response model is encouraging participants in the survey to respond, and then give truthful answers.
This model uses the probability theory in protecting the confidentiality of a respondent’s response. It has been extensively applied in various sensitive research areas over the years. The main idea is scrambling the data in such a way that the real status of the respondent who has or is taking part in the survey cannot be identified. It is expected that a truthful response will be obtained since confidentiality is guaranteed. Today, there are various stratified randomized models that by different researchers that you should also look at.
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