Who`s going to take care of grandma? An application of respondent-driven sampling to the home-based elderly care sector

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The need for paid nursing care is growing along with the number of elderly people. However, employment in the home care sector is precarious. This research project therefore pursues two goals.

First, we will investigate the life situations and motivational structures of people working in home care and nursing. To do so we will use a standardized survey.

Second, we employ a "respondent-driven sampling" approach (RDS) in order to deal with the difficulty of surveying employees in the home care sector. RDS allows us to draw a sample of rare and difficult to reach populations, so that we can draw statistically valid generalizations about our target population. Since RDS has rarely been applied in Germany, the project’s methodological insights can be used in other areas of social policy research as well as in political science and sociology in general.