Racial Attitudes and Race of Interviewer Item Non-Response

Matt Barreto, Loren Collingwood, Chris Parker, Francisco Pedraza


We evaluate the relationship between race of interviewer (ROI) and racial attitudes, using original survey data that includes a response to the question: “What is my race?”  A large percentage of our respondents answer, “don’t know.” Traditional racial attitude models tend to exclude ROI altogether, whereas alternative racial attitude models include perceived ROI, but drop “don’t know” respondents. We propose a new modeling strategy that includes “don’t know” respondents and find that in general this modeling strategy is preferred because it leads to better model fit and fewer type II errors. We suggest that researchers control for “don’t know” ROI responses in any racial attitude analysis.


Survey Research; Race of Interviewer; Non-Response

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