AMSRO Polling Inquiry 2019

Terms of Reference

Terms of Reference (revised 6 July 2019)

  1. To assess the accuracy of the published opinion polls (both national and sub-national) at the 2019 Australian federal election.
  2. To evaluate whether any inaccuracies identified might be part of a pattern evident at any previous elections or during polling since the last (2016) election.
  3. To investigate the causes of any inaccuracies that are identified. Potential causes to be considered will include (but not necessarily be limited to): the possible impact of late changes in vote preferences, the extent to which sample frames (sample sources) provided adequate population coverage, sampling methods, interview methods, data weighting or other data adjustments undertaken, differential availability and willingness to participate, question order and question wording and data item refusal.
  4. To assess whether the analysis or reporting of polls was influenced by a reluctance to be out of line with the published figures of other polls.
  5. To consult and seek relevant evidence from appropriate stakeholders, including but not exclusively, polling organisations, news organisations, journalists, and other polling experts.
  6. To assess whether adequate information was communicated to, and communicated by, the pollsters, the media and other interested commentators to inform the public about how polls were conducted and what their results mean.
  7. To make, as it sees fit, recommendations for improving how opinion polls are conducted and how their results are conveyed to the general public.

To submit a preliminary report to AMSRO as soon as practicable, with a view to publication.

AMSRO’s Role

  1. Appoint the Inquiry Panel and Advisory Board; Determine Terms of Reference following feedback from the Advisory Board and Inquiry Panel, and other relevant stakeholders.
  2. Encourage, promote and support the work of the review – provide (non-binding) comments on reporting, provide additional resources from AMSRO member companies as requested by Inquiry Panel, reimburse travel and other reasonable expenses incurred)
  3. Once the Inquiry Panel provides their final report – to publish, promote and support the final report and its recommendations.
  4. To field media queries during the Inquiry process and after the release of the report – so that the Inquiry Panel may conduct its work with a minimum of distraction.