(GLES) Long- and Short-term Panel Studies
At the occasion of the 2009 Bundestag election, GLES has for the first time successfully realized a highly complex and multi-facetted research design. The project both provided unprecedented wealth of high-quality data to the scientific community shortly after the election and produced numerous publications focusing on the 2009 election and electoral change from various perspectives. In the second funding period from 2012 to 2014, the well-proven design will be applied to the 2013 election, thus broadening the scope by adding the longitudinal perspective which is at the heart of GLES. The rolling three-wave face-to-face long-term panel is an integral part of GLES that connects both to the cross-sectional surveys, and to previous elections, thus providing comprehensive data to study the incidence and patterns of long-term electoral change in Germany at the individual level. In the second project period, annual re-interviews with the respondents from the 2005 and 2009 cross-section surveys will be conducted which will provide the base for analyses of long-term individual-level dynamics of public attitudes and behavior over several subsequent elections. The short-term campaign panel is designed to analyze intra-individual developments of political attitudes and political behavior during the campaign for the 2013 federal election. A very similar design as in 2009 will be applied, enriched by the inclusion of three independent cross-sections as control groups. Again the intention is to complete four interviews with at least 3000 respondents, and to complete all seven interviews with at least 1500 panelists. With data from both panel studies, findings about the specific constellations and the short-term dynamics of a given election or electoral campaign can be integrated into a long-term perspective in search of broader generalizations or structural developments.
Data Collection for the 2013 federal election was successfully completed in both panel studies. In the Short-term Campaign Panel, 5,256 respondents were interviewed online up to seven times, six times before the election and once after. Simultaneously to panel waves 3, 5, and 7, three cross-sectional control groups with approximately 1,200 interviews were conducted. In the Long-term Panel, 1,264 face-to-face interviews were realized, equivalent to 88 percent of the interviews in the previous wave. Additionally, a new panel will be set up in 2014 with the respondents from the 2013 Cross-Section. All data sets will be published in cooperation with GESIS in spring 2014.