Big Data in Survey Research AAPOR Task Force Report
Recent years have seen an increase in the amount of statistics describing different phenomena based on “Big Data.” This term includes data characterized not only by their large volume, but also by their variety and velocity, the organic way in which they are created, and the new types of processes needed to analyze them and make inference from them. The change in the nature of the new types of data, their availability, and the way in which they are collected and disseminated is fundamental. This change constitutes a paradigm shift for survey research. There is great potential in Big Data, but there are some fundamental challenges that have to be resolved before its full potential can be realized. This report provides examples of different types of Big Data and their potential for survey research; it also describes the Big Data process, discusses its main challenges, and considers solutions and research needs.