Are women more likely to participate in qualitative interviews


Are women (older) more likely to participate in qualitative interviews than men - or is this an assumption I have made? Any references/ pointers would be great - thank you


I don't know the stats on this but I've got kids and commitments so i'd be less likely to do an interview tbh


Hi, I am not sure but can certainly say that it has been exceptionally difficult to try and recruit fathers to take part in my qualitative study. While I am still interested in my original research question I would have elected to attempt to interview an easier to reach group if I had known the challenges involved in recruitment. Best of luck with your study, Karen


Recruitment can be very difficult and I think it's always tempting to think that a different group of people would have been easier to recruit. I'm recruiting both men and women for my research, and haven't noticed any gender difference, but I am recruiting from a very specific group of people and again it has been really challenging. I have found that I have most success when people feel that the interview is a chance to 'have their say' and influence things.


Thanks for input - maybe all I can do is offer possible reasons why this was the case, the most obvious being women live longer (research involved older people), rather than finding a paper that says women participate more in qual interview - poss no more than an assumption of mine. I agree re recruitment not being easy! For me going out and actively recruiting via social groups rather than 'cold contact' via letters worked best - but lost a good year of my life doing it!


hi redridinghood,
Yes I agree. If you recruit both men and women, you will most likely end up with more women. Older women are more patient, and are more likely willing to spend time answering questions. Ask a woman one question, if she answers, she will give you lots of answers. Ask a man more questions, if he answers, he will give you answers to those questions. Hope this helps.

love satchi


You might find some useful references in the quantitative or general research methods literature. I'm sure I've read that women are more likely to complete surveys and this might well extend to interviews.


I came across a reference that suggested women provided more qualitative data recently. Google 'Narratives of the night: The use of audio diaries in researching sleep'. It does not concern qualitative interviewing, but qualitative audio diaries and states that women's diaries were 15% longer than men's. So, it does not answer if women are 'more likely' to participate but that they may provide a little more qualitative data. Unsure how helpful this is though!