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Ignoring the Non-ignorables? Missingness and Missing Positions

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König, Thomas; Finke, Daniel; Daimer, Stephanie

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Abstract Missing or incomplete data on actors’ positions can cause significant problems in political analysis. Research on missing values suggests the use of multiple imputation methods rather than case deletion, but few studies have yet considered the non-ignorable problem - positions that are hidden for strategic purposes. We examine this problem and discuss the advantages and drawbacks of (i) multiple imputation as implemented in AMELIA; (ii) a computationally easy but, in the context of spatial modelling, straightforward measure of indifference and (iii) a conditional averaging algorithm, LDM, which seeks to reasonably fix actors’ positions in the policy space pre- and post-imputation. The analysis suggests that actors biased by the status quo strategically hide their more supportive positions. Although none of the existing methods - which produce quite different results - is perfectly suited for imputing hidden positions, LDM has the highest hit rate for the conjectured more supportive position.
Classification Methods and Techniques of Data Collection and Data Analysis, Statistical Methods, Computer Methods; Political Process, Elections, Political Sociology, Political Culture
Free Keywords EU Constitution; imputation; missing values; strategic positions;
Document language English
Publication Year 2005
Page/Pages p. 269-290
Journal European Union Politics, 6 (2005) 3
Status Postprint; peer reviewed
Licence PEER Licence Agreement (applicable only to documents from PEER project)