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ESRC Research Methods Festival. Using Structural Equation Modelling to re-examine the association between gender and social trust: the search for measurement equivalence Sarah Louise Bulloch Research Student University of Surrey S.Bulloch@surrey.ac.uk. ESRC Research Methods Festival.

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slide1

ESRC Research Methods Festival

Using Structural Equation Modelling to re-examine the association between gender and social trust: the search for measurement equivalence

Sarah Louise Bulloch

Research Student

University of Surrey

S.Bulloch@surrey.ac.uk

slide2

ESRC Research Methods Festival

  • Remit of the Research
  • Social and Political Trust project
  • “to apply a range of advanced statistical modelling techniques to the UK's rich secondary data resources to investigate the causes and consequences of social and political trust”
  • Social trust and gender
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ESRC Research Methods Festival

  • Why we might expect gender to be associated with social trust
  • Education
  • (Brehm and Rahn 1997, Uslaner 2002, Li et. al. 2005, Sturgis et. al. 2007)
  • Paid employment
  • (Brehm and Rahn 1997, Glaeser et. al. 1999, Inglehart 1999)
  • Income (Paterson 1999, Uslaner 2002)
  • Political capital (Claibourn and Martin 2000)
slide4

ESRC Research Methods Festival

  • How to explore these associations?
  • European Social Survey
  • 3 Trust Questions:
  • ppltrst: ‘Generally speaking, would you say that most people can be trusted or that you can't be too careful in dealing with people?
  • pplfair: Do you think that most people would try to take advantage of you if they got a chance or would they try to be fair?
  • plhelp: Would you say that most of the time people try to be helpful or are they mostly looking out for themselves?
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ESRC Research Methods Festival

Problem: measurement equivalence of trust across gender

Gender

B

A

slide6

ESRC Research Methods Festival

Measurement equivalence of social trust across gender ESS 04

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ESRC Research Methods Festival

  • Implications and reflections
  • Comparison of mean trust levels is problematic in most countries.
  • Opens new research idea: substantive explanation for differential item functions?
  • SEM approach brought the issue to light
  • But is the method appropriate for the research instrument/ question? Sensitivity of fit measures etc
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ESRC Research Methods Festival

Thank you.

For links to papers from the SAPT project please see http://www.sapt.surrey.ac.uk/resources.htm

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