Our 2018 questionnaire (PDF) measures respondents’ tenure security by posing nearly 60 questions in six core modules (two additional front-end modules capture details on respondents’ key characteristics and record permission to use their data).

In line with the efforts to build a comparable indicator for tracking progress on tenure security in the land sector, we assess perceived tenure security via a central question about people’s home, land and / or additional property:

  • In the next five years, how likely or unlikely is it that you could lose the right to use this property, or part of this property, against your will?

To contextualise this, we collect a range of additional data through the questionnaire designed to capture robust information on individuals’ tenure situation, as well as key individual and household characteristics.

Key areas of enquiry (Table 1) include information on tenure rights the respondents have over their main dwelling, respondents’ perceptions of their tenure, documentation of tenure rights, benefits conferred by tenure security, tenure rights to other properties and tenure security of these, and experience of tenure insecurity and perceptions of tenure security at a national level.

Table 1 - Methodology

The questionnaire was reviewed by Prindex’s Technical Advisory Group (TAG), which includes representatives from the academic and civil society research communities with considerable individual and institutional expertise in researching tenure issues and designing perception-based survey instruments.

The questionnaire has also been tested through multi-country testing rounds to assess the distribution of responses to individual questions and covariation with other answers. These helped identify the most consistently robust questions and remove redundant ones from the questionnaire. Test rounds have also been used to compare the effects of increasing sample size and the number of sampling units, and identify meaningful subgroup differences (e.g. gender, age or education).

Questionnaires are localised to ensure that the questions can be understood unambiguously, particularly in relation to types of documentation. This means that we:

  • Devise nationally-relevant response options for a small number of questions (e.g. lists of applicable documentation); and
  • Translate the questionnaire into the local language(s).

Approach to data collection

Collecting data in 2018

For data collection in 2018, using two data research companies (Gallup and CrossTab), enumerators conducted face-to-face or telephone interviews in each country among a nationally representative sample of people eighteen years or older with a total sample of over 53,000 respondents over 33 countries. See Table 2 for final sample sizes in each country.

Table 2 - Methodology wave 1 and 2

In all countries except the United Kingdom, a multistage stratified cluster sampling approach was used to select respondents using the latest available census data. In the United Kingdom, surveys were conducted over the telephone and respondents were selected from national landline and mobile phone lists. You can find more information about our sampling strategy here. As we aim to interview a representative sample of the adult population, not the head of household or the most knowledgeable person about the dwelling or land, we used a randomisation process to select which household adult was interviewed. This process also ensured an equal-as-possible probability that a female respondent was interviewed. Interviewing individuals allows us to present results for both men and women, and young and old people, and compare their situations.

Collecting data as we move forward

In 2019, we aim to collect data from over 100 countries in total, including Prindex’s tenure security perceptions module in the Gallup World Poll. This will also enable us to combine the Prindex data with an even wider range of data in the World Poll to allow us to analyse which variables are most closely associated with perceived tenure security.

A village in Costa Rica
A village in Costa Rica


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