States of Comparability: A Meta-Study of Representative Population Surveys and Studies on Cultural Consumption

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This article discusses similarities and differences found among representative national surveys and studies of cultural attendance. In this meta-study, 16 surveys from 12 countries are subjected to a comparative analysis regarding their content, methodology and theoretical orientation. The investigation is based, not on the results of the individual studies, but on such aspects as their structure and divergences in content, their differences in methodological approach, and their principle theoretical backgrounds. The goals of this meta-study are to evaluate the comparability of the studies and their results in an international framework and to identify best practice examples for high-quality analyses. The results of this meta-study show that, in the field of audience research, there are certainly studies that meet scientific standards. However, in general and especially concerning the comparability of such analyses, research in this field faces a number of problems that restrict detailed juxtaposition.
Original languageEnglish
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)172-191
Number of pages20
Publication statusPublished - 04.2014