Research on Cohousing [was Shadowlake Village Resident research project]
From: Sharon Villines (
Date: Wed, 22 Mar 2006 06:45:32 -0800 (PST)

On Mar 22, 2006, at 9:04 AM, Ann Zabaldo wrote:

BTW -- I applaud CohoUS for trying to help w/ the research students and
others are doing on cohousing.  This list alone gets many requests for
people to answers surveys...the results of which we never, or almost never, see. (Has anyone seen the results of any of the surveys we've been asked to fill out over the years? I can't remember any results being posted here but I could have missed them.) The research parameters are often poorly thought out, poorly executed and goodness knows how the data are interpreted. Also
many of the studies appear to be redundant.  One wonders what these
student's professors/teachers are teaching. Consequently...I don't answer
surveys anymore.

I agree wholeheartedly. We've also discussed starting a whole other list just for surveys and statistical discussions -- I myself almost started one such list but it quickly became a question of teaching statistics and precise language to undergraduate (and sometimes high school) students. I wasn't qualified to teach statistics and teaching clear thinking was a "been there done that" experience. And as Ann says we never saw any of the results of these surveys and many were so badly designed you couldn't respond accurately anyway.

The one kind of message I have often wanted to ban from the list were surveys and research reports. Announcing that one is being done is one thing, but expecting to get any kind of reliable results from a cattle call for responders is quite another. Research studies are not done that way.

Sharon Villines
Building Community: A Guide to Creating New Neighborhoods

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