Match of sex across waves
Is there a source of definitive information about the gender of individuals from the BHPS part of Understanding Society? In most instance, of course, the data match from wave to wave. However, there are a small number of cases where this does not seem to be true, with pid values as follows:
A. 12104876 – after 22 waves of “male”, Understanding Society Wave 6 has “female”.
B. 15249832 – after 18 waves of “male”, Understanding Society Wave 2 has “female”.
C. 94654395 – after 10 waves of “male”, Understanding Society Waves 2-5 have “female”, before Wave 6 reverts to “male”.
D. 118773119 – after 8 waves of “female”, Understanding Society Waves 2-3 have “male”.
E. 119147807 – after 8 waves of “male”, Understanding Society Waves 2-6 have “female”.
F. 119194929 – after 8 waves of “female”, Understanding Society Wave 2 has “male”.
G. 119221578 – after 8 waves of “male”, Understanding Society Waves 2, 4 and 5 have “female”, before Wave 6 reverts to “male”.
H. 165683759 – after 1 wave of “female”, Understanding Society Wave 2 has “male”.
Some viewing of sex_cr suggests that the above cases are not a direct result of a discrepancy between an initially reported value for the sex variable, and a sex_cr correction.
Updated by Victoria Nolan about 5 years ago
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We are aware of some inconsistencies in sex (and age) recorded in the data. As with all data collection, there always is some degree of error in the data. The variables sex_cr (and age_cr) use information collected during the latest interview, where DOB and gender were confirmed. However, this confirmed information, too, may have been recorded with error. The Understanding Society survey team deals with many of these issues before data are released but it is a manual process that can take time to resolve. Some changes in gender may be genuine and even forenames do not always indicate the gender. For each data release, further work on cleaning up these inconsistencies takes place, but it is not possible to fully resolve all of them.
The Quality Profile may be helpful here (see tables 56-59). https://www.understandingsociety.ac.uk/documentation/mainstage/quality-profile
Best wishes, Victoria.