Survey Research

Sometimes the information needed to evaluate complex economic issues is not available. In this case Veritas staff often design questionnaires and collect original data. To support these survey research efforts, Veritas has created its Survey Research Center which specializes in conducting high-quality, cost-effective survey design, testing, administration, data compilation, and analysis. Through its Survey Research Center, Veritas has designed, pretested, piloted, administered, and analyzed nearly a dozen complex scientific surveys.

Questionnaire Development

Useful survey results require that respondents understand and complete the entire survey instrument. Veritas is experienced in all phases of questionnaire development including drafting information treatments and questions, moderating focus groups, and conducting verbal protocol based one-on-one pretests.


We have administered many surveys of all sorts. These include a multi-month mail panel of more than 1,000 recreators, a brief telephone survey on boating access in a northeastern state, and an on-site, year-long creel survey of anglers along an industrialized river. We have administered a number of direct mail surveys using the Dillman Total Design approach to achieve response rates of up to seventy-five percent.

Discrete Choice Surveys

Many of our surveys are constructed to support modeling complex economic choice behaviors such as fishing and new product adoption. Analyzing the “discrete choice” data that arise from such surveys requires advanced statistical analysis skills, an area in which we have significant capabilities. Our most advanced surveys include Discrete Choice Experiments (DCE) in which hypothetical choice scenarios in a sophisticated experimental design are used to understand preferences, model behaviors, and predict outcomes under different conditions.

Dillman Total Design Method

Data can come from a number of sources. For collecting primary data via survey techniques certain entities such as utilities and resource agencies have unique advantages. In particular, they maintain name and address based lists of customers and they typically have a high level of familiarity and trust from customers. These factors combined with behavioral economic concepts from the Dillman Total Design Method including trust/authority, repetition, and compensation result in very high response rates for mail-based surveys.

Example Projects

We have designed and implemented several surveys throughout the United States, including on-site, mail, and telephone modes.

  • 2018 Electricity Service Plan Knowledge, Interest, Intention, and Perceptions Survey
  • 2018 Electricity Service Plan Discrete Choice Experiment Survey
  • 2016 Residential Solar Survey
  • 2015 Electricity Service Plan Discrete Choice Experiment Survey
  • 2013 New Jersey Outdoor Recreation Survey
  • 2013 Alaska Outdoor Recreation Survey
  • 2012 Environmental Impact Awareness Survey
  • 2012 Texas Electric Vehicle Survey
  • 2011 Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) Electric Vehicle Survey
  • 2010 TVA and Southern Company Electric Vehicle Survey
  • 2010 Upper Great Lakes Fluctuating Water Levels Survey of Water Users

In addition to these surveys, Veritas staff have also worked on designing, pretesting, piloting, administering, and/or analyzing the results of the following surveys:

  • 2018 Nuiqsut Survey
  • 2017 Cover Crop Policy Adoption Survey
  • 2011-2012 Lower Passaic River Creel/Angler Survey
  • 2002 Housatonic River Floodplain User Survey
  • 2000-2001 Lower Passaic River Creel/Angler Survey
  • 2000 New Jersey Outdoor Recreation Survey
  • 1998 Wisconsin Outdoor Recreation Survey
  • 1995 Pennsylvania Duke Hunters Survey