美國宗教社會學家 Robert Wuthnow 質疑調查可靠性，與 Pew Research Center 對話
One of the many claims of today’s polling industry is that it is the source of credible evidence about religion. It tells us week by week how many Americans regularly attend religious services, whether religion’s strength in our lives is holding its own or declining, and how often we pray. We learn how various denominations are faring, whether some parts of the country are more religious than others, and which kinds of religious beliefs are most appealing, and to whom. So pervasive has this information become, in fact, that for many people it defines what American religion is.
In his essay in your August issue, “In Polls We Trust,” Robert Wuthnow highlights several important challenges researchers conducting surveys about religion face. Chief among them is the steep decline in response rates to telephone polls. This is indeed a serious issue; the response rate in a typical Pew Research Center poll fell from 36 percent in 1997 to 9 percent today.
Consumers of public opinion polls should always consider methodology and response rates when interpreting survey findings. To the extent that his essay inspires consumers of poll results to pay attention to the details of data collection, Wuthnow offers important advice.
One of the reasons polls frequently err in estimating African American religious involvement is that “easy to reach” and “hard to reach” black respondents differ on religion questions from patterns among white respondents. The studies pollsters cite to vindicate low response rates have not to my knowledge examined such variation.
My hope is that the polling industry will take up the serious challenges it currently faces by doing all it can to produce better information before polling reaches the point where its results generate no confidence at all.
Funding from the Pew Charitable Trusts for religion polling at the Pew Research Center is among the most generous from any source. Pew could be of enormous service by doing more to address the difficult questions facing religion polling.
Here are some suggestions:
Chong Ho Yu
余創豪 firstname.lastname@example.org 兩個星期前筆者發表了【特朗普和傳統家庭價值】一文，之後一位香港讀者問我是否以極端例子來誇大美國福音派的陰暗面，若果我所說屬實，那麼美國福音派便好像是假仁假義。 我想在此… 詳閱
- 離開容易，留底困難 — 思道活動後紀錄
前言 本來去完活動後，寫了一篇文章放在自己的blog中，過了一段時間，發覺還有東西想補充，修改一下再放上來。 正文 去完思talk的活動「覺得堂會不濟，為何我們仍留下？」，實在十分精彩，參加者有年青，… 詳閱
傘城網上教會 Umbrella City Cyberchurch
在老「屈」新書發佈會上，「一男子」坐正中，還以為是他的新書發佈會。可能主辦單位看在全國政協副主席的銜頭上，讓丑生當主角。 係，我係直接咁講「一男子」係小丑。 「作為傳道人，咁公然去針對一個… 詳閱
我自小成長於福音派教會，而福音派教會十分重視講道。每個禮拜的主日崇拜，有超過一半時間都是在講道。我也數不清自己究竟聽過多少篇道了，總之就是很多。 遺憾的是，我印象中聽過好的道很少，但差的道… 詳閱
［本文蒙作者允許轉載］ 當一堆基督徒在喊基督徒不能自殺，自殺是犯罪違背神心意時，卻無法回答聖經一位義人約伯想自殺，一位先知約拿想自殺符不符合聖經，也無法舉出自殺就是違反不可殺人條例。 重點… 詳閱
臨終者的臉容 臨終者的臉容以一種絕對的他者向我們出現，不只是因為每一個人都是他者，更因為一位曾可以行走自如和照顧他人和自己的人如今卻卧在牀上，一位曾思想靈巧的人如今卻陷於思想混亂。列維納斯… 詳閱