Keywords: Methodology of Social Research; Telephone Interviews; Refusals; Persuasive Tactics; Interviewers' Training.
The growing number of people who refuse to participate in telephone interviews compromises the representativeness of the sample. Most of the analysis of the refusals has so far been directed only to identify the socio-demographic characteristics of non-respondents, such as their sex, age and level of education. With this contribution, we present the results of an innovative research that analyzed the content of the interaction between interviewer and answerer during the telephone contact. This research design allowed us to find not only the individual and contextual variables associated with the refusals, but also the questions and objections most frequently raised by answerers and the persuasive tactics used by the interviewers. It was also evaluated the effectiveness of these tactics. The results show the inability of interviewers to convey persuasive messages and suggest to devote much more attention to the interviewers' training.