U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

Methodological Research to Support the Redesign of NCVS: Sub-National Estimates

Award Information

Award #
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2010, $9,313,707)

This solicitation seeks to design and conduct a major survey to accompany the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS). In response to an interest among our stakeholders for the production of sub-national estimates, this project is intended to lay a foundation for determining the most viable and cost-effective option for the development and implementation of a large-scale effort to generate sub-national crime victimization estimates.
The primary goal of this solicitation is to generate preliminary data at the MSA-level to test the feasibility of producing estimates of the annual incidence of victimization in these areas. It is anticipated that, ultimately, the sub-national companion data collection will strategically boost the core NCVS sample, and that the blending of the two data collections will provide the necessary statistical power to produce reliable estimates at the sub-national level. Another key goal of this research is to develop the means to create adjustments to the MSA-level estimates to account for the differences between the sub-national companion survey methodology and the core NCVS methodology. Given that BJS expects the survey response rates for this companion survey to be lower in owing to light of the lower-cost methodology and as such subject to a higher level of non-response bias, BJS plans to leverage the data from the core NCVS, which currently achieves nearly a 90 percent response rate through in-person interviewing techniques, to improve the non-response adjustments for the sub-national companion data. Ultimately, this will reduce the non-response bias in the blended survey data. The cost and viability of the sub-national companion survey methodologies in these areas will be compared to the estimates, metadata, and para-data of the core NCVS.

The objective is to blend the data from this survey with the core NCVS to produce reliable and valid sub-national estimates of the incidence of victimization at a reasonable cost. The key objectives for this study are to:

1. Develop a sub-national companion data collection to boost the core NCVS and evaluate the companion collection for reliability, validity, cost-effectiveness, and sustainability.

2. Evaluate the feasibility and utility of blending the sub-national companion data into the core NCVS, despite the markedly different sources and levels of coverage, response, and measurement error.

3. Compare the trade-offs in response bias, cost, operational complexity, and estimation between the core NCVS and a lower-cost, sub-national component.

4. Develop sufficiently reliable data at the sub-national level to develop and evaluate model-based estimation procedures that could serve as an additional component to the survey estimates.


Date Created: September 21, 2010