Data collection using electronically assisted interviews in a roadshow - a methodological evaluation.
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This paper discusses the second stage of a pilot study, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, which investigated the impact of technology on the communication of parliamentary information to the general public. This second stage tested the application of a new data collection tool - an interactive, electronically assisted interview delivered in a roadshow environment. The approach was tested in the context of the public's need for information about the UK Parliament, the Scottish Parliament and the National Assembly for Wales. Interviews were carried out by a researcher, aboard a minibus equipped with a laptop and mobile data transmission equipment, who assisted members of the public in exploring and responding to parliamentary and devolved assembly websites. Roadshows took place across the UK at organisations such as public libraries, community centres, sheltered accommodation and universities. This paper discusses in critical detail all aspects of the execution of the methodology and draws conclusions as to its validity for future research.