Echoes of Egypt

In the last two and a half years, Egypt has experienced a dizzying series of political transformations: a dictator’s fall, military rule, an Islamist presidential administration, and a popular military coup. As the most populous state in a Middle East undergoing deep and lasting changes, understanding the views of the Egyptian populace is now more important than ever.

However, at a time when public opinion plays an increasing role in the politics of Egypt, chronic instability presents significant challenges to face-to-face surveys of public opinion. As a cost-effective means to bypass these challenges and directly reach respondents in-country, telephone surveys are the likely future of opinion research in Egypt. It is therefore critical to examine who composes Egypt’s telephone-owning population so researchers understand the biases implicit in sampling Egypt’s national population via telephone.  D3 Systems presented a poster using nationally representative face-to-face survey to explore the demographics and telephony habits of Egypt’s telephone-owning population and better inform future telephone-based public opinion research of Egypt.

This poster utilizes data collected in Egypt during October and November of 2013. D3 Systems, Inc. commissioned this national face-to-face survey using a stratified multi-stage cluster design. Sampling procedures included the enumeration of households at sampling points and subsequent selection of households for inclusion in the survey. The poster includes details about the survey’s methodology and challenges faced by the researchers while conducting this project.

Key Findings:

  • Telephone penetration in Egypt is very high (99% either own a mobile phone or have access to landline phones).
  • A complete mobile-only frame covers 98% of Egypt’s population (81% of the population owns only mobile phones, and an additional 17% are dual users between mobiles and landlines).
  • Sample allocation by frame will have an impact on sample demographics (mobile-only respondents are more likely than dual users to be younger, less educated, lower class, and living in rural areas).
  • Dual users (both mobile and landline) are more likely to answer their mobile phones than landline phones, even for calls outside of Egypt.
  • Interviewer gender will have an impact on sample demographics (female participation in interviews is less likely with male interviewers, and the likelihood of respondent participation increases for both males and females with female interviewers).

For more in-depth results, download the poster.

Samuel Solomon and David Peng of D3 Systems presented these findings at the 69th annual American Association of Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) Conference in Annaheim, California from May 15th – May 18th, 2014.  Check out our Research & Publications page for more AAPOR 2014 papers and presentations.