ERF has organized a training workshop on “Opinion Poll Data Analysis Using Multilevel Models. This workshop addressed the use of opinion poll data to test theories related to attitudes to gender equality, civic action, democracy and human security and economic policies preferences, in Middle East and North African countries. The purpose was to link norm changes to underlying circumstances, at the individual level, such as family background, ethnicity, gender, generation and place of origin, as well as at the national level, such as GDP per capita, economic structure, political variables, etc.
The workshop focused on the multilevel modeling where participants were introduced to various types of graphical analysis. Lectures on econometric methods were combined with a select review of the economic, political science, and sociological literature that use opinion polls to test theories empirically.
Under the direction of instructors, Ishac Diwan, Irina Vartanova and Eduard Ponarin, the two-day workshop has covered the following themes:
- Introduction to multilevel modelling. Random intercept and random slope models. Model specification and group level predicators
- Model diagnostics and selection.
- Random effects visualization.
- Multilevel logistic regression.
The workshop is part of the capacity building activities carried out by ERF under its Arab Spring Development Initiative (ASDI).
About the Trainers
Ishac Diwan holds the chair of Socio-economics of the Arab World, Paris Sciences et Lettres. He is also an invited Researcher at Paris School of Economics, and a Research Affiliate at the Middle East Initiative, Harvard Kennedy University and Research Fellow at ERF. He previously taught at the Harvard University Kennedy School of Government and at New York University. He held several positions at the World Bank, in the Research Complex, the Middle East department, and the World Bank Institute and in Addis Ababa and then in Accra, as the East Africa Country Director, and then in West Africa. His current research interests include growth strategies, the political economy of private sector development, and the analysis of public opinions, with a special interest in Africa and the Middle East. He directs the Economic and Political Transformation program of ERF.
Irina Vartanova has PhD in psychology from St. Petersburg State University. Her research interest focused on the application of advanced statistical and computational methods in social science. She acquired extensive knowledge of analyzing big survey data at the Laboratory for Comparative Social Research at the Higher School of Economics in St. Petersbrug under the scientific supervision of Ronald Inglehart. She is currently an associated researcher at the Institute for Future Studies.
Eduard Ponarin is the Director of Laboratory for Comparative Social Research at the Higher School of Economics, Russia. He got an M.A. in Psychology from the Leningrad State University in 1986 and a Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Michigan in 1996. He is Russia’s representative at the World Values Survey Association and a member of the Executive Council of that organization. Before joining the Higher School of Economics in 2009, he taught at the European University at St. Petersburg.