Survey methods in migration research: design, implementation, and analysis

Please note: This page refers to a course that has already taken place.

07 - 09 Sep 2022

PRIO, Hausmanns gate 3, Oslo

Jørgen Jensehaugen (

5 ECTS (with approved essay)

Jørgen Carling (

Jørgen Carling is Research Professor at the Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO) and co-director of the PRIO Migration Centre. His research covers global migration, immobility and transnationalism, seeking to explain how migration arises, and how it affects societies, families and individuals. He holds a PhD in Human Geography and combines ethnographic and statistical methods, often in mixed-methods research designs. He currently leads MIGNEX, a large 10-country project on migration and development, as well as the ERC-funded project Future Migration as Present Fact (FUMI).

Jessica Hagen-Zanker is a Senior Research Fellow at ODI, an independent, global development think tank based in London. Her research focuses on migration and development, migration decision-making, the links between migration and social protection, the humanitarian-development nexus as well as the analysis of social protection programmes and policies. She leads the survey component of the MIGNEX project. Jessica holds a PhD in Public Policy from Maastricht University and is affiliated with PRIO as a PRIO Global Fellow.

This new PhD-level course provides broad training on survey research methods, with an emphasis on applications in migration research. It spans all stages of survey research, from research design to communication of results, reflecting the view that each step is potentially decisive for overall quality and impact.

The course is designed to suit participants with diverse levels of previous knowledge and different needs in their own research. Under each topic, participants will be sensitized to the considerations, dilemmas, and options that will enable them to pursue relevant topics in greater depth on their own. The course draws upon the two lecturers’ research experience over the past two decades.

Teaching will take place in person at the Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO) in Norway. The course is followed by a course on ethnographic fieldwork 12–14 September to enable a foundation for mixed-methods research. Interested participants must apply separately to each course.

Application deadline: 10 June 2022.

Download full outline of the course: Survey methods in migration research 2022.pdf

Course Description:

​This course spans all the stages of survey research, with an emphasis on studies of migration, displacement, ethnicity and transnationalism. It is designed to be relevant to PhD candidates who carry out their own surveys as well as to those that work with pre-existing survey data. In addition, the course provides a foundation for planning survey-based migration research after the PhD. The sessions address research design, approaches to sampling, development of survey instruments, technical solutions, management of data collection, quality assurance, data cleaning, analysis, and communication of results. The course also includes a session on combining survey data with ethnographic data in mixed-methods projects. The lecturers draw upon experience from survey research at different scales, from one-person projects to large-scale international research. Under each topic in the course, a key objective is to sensitize participants to the considerations, dilemmas, and options that will enable them to pursue relevant topics in-depth on their own. The course will use examples of data collection with SurveyCTO and analysis with Stata, but familiarity with specific software is not a prerequisite. Participants may benefit from also pursuing courses on the specific statistical analyses they plan to use, either before or after completing this course.


​Download full outline of the course: Survey methods in migration research 2022.pdf


​Application deadline: 10 June 2022.


In order to obtain credits for the course, participants must submit a paper of 3000–8000 words related to survey research methodology. (Deadline to be confirmed.) Depending on the nature and current stage of the participant's own research, the paper can be an account of survey methodology already employed, a plan for a survey to be executed, a general discussion of any aspect of survey methodology, or a substantive paper with analysis of survey data.


Applications must be submitted via the online form. The field “How does the content of this course relate to the work you have done or will do as part of your doctoral research?” must contain answers to the following questions: 

  1. What is the topic of your PhD research?
  2. Have you conducted a survey as part of your PhD research? 
  3. Are you planning to conduct a survey as part of your PhD research? 
  4. Are you using secondary survey data for your PhD research? 

The course is free of charge, but students will have to cover their own travel and accommodation costs. Readings may include books that participants are required to borrow or purchase. The course is open to applications from any researcher wishing to advance their survey research skills, but PhD students will normally be prioritized.