[OSM-talk] Fwd: A short online questionnaire on the OSM users .....(It takes 48 seconds)

Kai Krueger kakrueger at gmail.com
Thu Jun 27 18:55:44 UTC 2013

I tried sending this mail through nabble earlier on, but it doesn't seem
to have gone through, so I'll try and resend. If you did get this email
twice, I apologise.

Clifford Snow wrote
>Your survey is mostly demographics. There were two actual questions
>to mapping. I'm not sure what you hope to achieve.

Understanding the demographics of the mapping community can be a very
interesting question and topic of research.

After all, there has just been set up a new mailing list
"diversity-talk", to discuss the demographics of openstreetmap and how
to achieve a broad appeal to many different demographic groups. Having
some good hard numbers about the current situation, to augment the data
we already have, would be rather helpful.

If good methods can be worked out how to achieve those numbers, these
studies can be repeated periodically. That can then be helpful, amongst
other things, to see if various outreach programs to try and diversify
the community have had success, and if yes in which demographics.

Understanding the motivation of mappers can also be hugely interesting!
This information can help figure out how best to promote OSM and get
more people involved in mapping and where best to focus efforts to
attract more people.

>Clifford Snow wrote
>Please rethink this survey and try again.

Without knowing the questions this research is trying to answer and what
other tools and data they are using as well as their analysis method,
you cannot judge if it is a good survey and appropriately set up for the
questions it hopes to address. Furthermore, good research in social
sciences is often incredibly difficult. As you usually have no
interventional control on the subject of study and you often have to
deal with subjective reports in surveys. So it is often not uncommon to
have to ask many seemingly redundant and strange questions in order to
get around or detect biases.

>Clifford Snow wrote
>As Frederik Ramm suggest, please
>explain more about your research.

I would be very interested in hearing more about the research as well.
However, there are situations when you don't want to reveal the actual
questions you are interested in ahead of time to your survey
participants as alone the knowledge of what the researcher is interested
can bias the results. With the relatively factual questions of this
survey that seems less likely though..

Overall, I think there is more than enough room for a lot of different
research, both social and gis research in the OSM community and its
data. Imho it is great to see research into these topics and the more
the better!


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