Support #2040

Survey Weights

Added by Martha Tindall 3 months ago. Updated about 2 months ago.

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I am conducting an analysis an dam struggling to determine the best weights to use and was hoping you could give me some guidance. My analysis uses data from the years 2018 to 2021 (inclusive) to conduct a TWFE linear model. My model includes a main effects and interaction term involving a binary variable for pre-pandemic and during-pandemic. I have the following questions regarding weighting.

1. Currently my pandemic cut off is March 2020, given the term of interest involves time, is it necessary to start the year 2018 in March and extend the data to March 2022 to ensure there is equal representation of sample months in each group, or is it okay to just go January 2018 to December 2021 (keeping the cut off in March 2020)?

2. I wish to use an unbalanced panel design as the subgroups I when I use longitudinal weights, my sample becomes just 12% of what it would be using an unbalanced panel. My question is how do I choose these weights? Guidance on the Understanding Society website is for creating balanced panels and using _lw weights, however in my situation this is not possible. Is it appropriate to apply the cross sectional weight for each observation in a given wave or is there something else I should be doing?

3. On the Understanding Society website you mention rescaling of weights for analysing by calendar year. First, is this required in my situation? Second, do you provide guidance for doing so in R as the only advice available is for stata which I am not familiar with.

Thank you in advance for your time and please let me know if you need any more information from me.



Updated by Understanding Society User Support Team 3 months ago

  • Category set to Weights
  • Status changed from New to In Progress
  • Assignee set to Olena Kaminska
  • Private changed from Yes to No

Many thanks for your enquiry. The Understanding Society team is looking into it and we will get back to you as soon as we can. We aim to respond to simple queries within 48 hours and more complex issues within 7 working days.

Best wishes,
Understanding Society User Support Team


Updated by Olena Kaminska 3 months ago


Thank you for your question. For answers have a look here, questions 13-17 are relevant to your question:

For unbalanced panel you may want to create your own weights (see question 17).
Just a comment, we modelled nonresponse separately for before and after the first lockdown, specifically to enable such research that you are planning.

Hope this helps,


Updated by Understanding Society User Support Team 3 months ago

  • Status changed from In Progress to Feedback
  • % Done changed from 0 to 60

Updated by Understanding Society User Support Team about 2 months ago

  • Status changed from Feedback to Resolved
  • % Done changed from 60 to 100

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