Title

The Pitfalls of List Experiments in Conflict Zones

Document Type

Article

Journal/Book Title/Conference

Civil Wars

Volume

20

Issue

3

Publisher

Routledge

Publication Date

8-21-2018

First Page

408

Last Page

435

Abstract

Scholars of conflict often rely on fieldwork to study behaviours of civilians and combatants on the ground. A list experiment is a potentially useful tool for conflict scholars, as this survey methodology is designed to indirectly obtain truthful self-reports of behaviours while preserving the respondents’ anonymity. Acknowledging its advantages, this article also reviews the often overlooked shortcomings of list experiments as a survey method in conflict zones, including those limitations that cannot be corrected with better design or implementation. As an illustration, we discuss the list experiment employed to measure civilian assistance to the insurgents in the Donbas War.

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