The Immigrant Integration Index is designed to be easily implemented by researchers and practitioners working across a range of settings. This page provides a list of common steps and considerations for use.

Watch the recording of our webinar on how to adapt the Index to different languages and country contexts. Access the slides here.

1. Ethical and practical considerations

  • Access: how will participants be identified and contacted?
  • Mode: conduct survey by phone, Whatsapp, e-mail/online (e.g., via Qualtrics), or in-person
  • Consent: obtain active opt-in of participants
  • Privacy and Confidentiality: ensure anonymity and data protections
  • Approvals: obtain all necessary ethical (e.g., IRB) approvals from your institution
  • Question order: randomize the question order for different respondents

2. Select the IPL-12 or the IPL-24

  • Both indexes produce a single measure of integration between 0 and 1.
  • As the IPL-12 is a subset of the IPL-24, the scores are highly correlated. Since the IPL-24 takes three times as long to administer, it is usually sufficient to use the IPL-12.
  • If a certain integration dimension is of special interest and should be measured with more precision, the additional IPL-24 questions from the respective dimension can be added.

3. Translate the tool

  • Offer the questionnaire in the native language of the respondents, at a level that is easy to understand

4. Country Name:

  • Adapt to the country of research and the host country’s citizens (e.g. Greeks instead of Americans).
  • The index prioritizes simplicity and defines rooted populations as people who have the citizenship of the host country (e.g., Americans and not just American citizens by birth).

5. Linguistic Dimension:

  • In cases where there are 2 or more+ official languages, the language referenced in the survey should be the language migrants will need to understand important legal information, speak with authorities, and succeed in the workplace.

6. Economic Dimension:

  • When asking respondents for their household income, gross (pre-tax) household income (as opposed to net) should be used because it is most common in employment contracts and is what respondents are most likely to remember.
  • In contexts where net income is what people remember, net income can be used, so long as data on net median local household income is available for scoring.
  • Answers on income are scored in relation to the local household income. The amount of the (gross) median local household income should be adapted to the context and put in five income categories. Possible sources are census data, the national statistical office, the country’s central bank, and other academic articles.
  • The term “household” is described to respondents as “everyone with whom you share an apartment or house and with whom you are also related by birth, marriage, partnership, or adoption.” For each new study, users should review if this description makes sense in a given context or if it should be altered.
  • When asking about respondents’ employment status, some answer options might be implausible in a given context and can be removed. Generally, a score of one is assigned if a respondent is unemployed and has no other daily activity that keeps them from working. A score of three is assigned if a respondent is in unpaid work (e.g., domestic care work), in school, or is unemployed due to sickness, disability, or old age. A score of five is assigned if a respondent is employed or earns an income in a different way (e.g., through military service).

7. Political Dimension:

  • Requires a good understanding of the context the population of interest lives in. Pay particular attention to these questions in the pilot survey and remove them if needed.
  • Sometimes the political situation may have severely affected the target population to the point that it may be better to drop the IPL-24 questions of that dimension and just keep the IPL-12 ones, or remove this set of questions entirely.

8. Navigational Dimension:

  • These questions must be adapted to the local context. If the original questions work for a given context, then only the answers need to be adapted (e.g. it is common to send letters in France, but addresses look different than in the U.S.).
  • If the original questions do not work in the context of interest, users can design new questions. Examples can be found in the survey instruments for Brazil, Peru and Dominican Republic on the IPL Integration Index website.
  • When designing new questions, pay attention to the difficulty level of the question. They have to be specific to a context but very much common knowledge in the given context. One way to test this is to pilot the survey.

9. Adding or Removing Questions:

  • Do not drop questions unless they might put respondents at risk and/or are deemed too sensitive. Even if there will be little variation in responses (e.g. the population of interest does not have political rights in the host country), it is still better to keep the question.
  • The index was not designed to capture all possible aspects of migrant integration. Adding questions is fine as long as they are not used in the calculation of the index and they do not measure similar concepts as the integration index questions.
  • It is best to use pre-tested questions, which can be found in the Global Survey Bank on Migrant Integration and Social Cohesion or other surveys on migrant integration.

10. Calculating Scores:

Below is a list of survey items and potential adaptations to consider.

 

Dimension Question Adaptation
Psychological How connected do you feel with [host country name]? Host country name in question
How often do you feel like an outsider in [host country name] Host country name in question
Thinking about your future, where do you want to live? Host country name in response options
How often do you feel isolated from [host country] society? Host country in question
Navigational In this country, how difficult or easy would it be for you to see a doctor? None
In this country, how difficult or easy would it be for you to search for a job (find the proper listings)? Method by which people find jobs (listings or other)
In this country, how difficult or easy would it be for you to get help with legal problems? None
How many drinks (a can or glass of beer, a glass of wine, or a shot of liquor), in about an hour time span, can an average person have before he or she is too intoxicated to legally drive a car? Question and response options. Consider whether question is contextually-relevant.
How do most people in [country name] typically pay their income taxes? Country name in question and response options
If you were sending a letter in [country name], what is the correct way to write the address on the envelope?  Country name in question and response options. Consider whether question is contextually-relevant.
In [country name], how should you seek medical help for a condition like chronic back pain? Host country in question and response options
Economic What is your household’s total annual income (before taxes and deductions) from all sources? If you don’t know the exact figure, please give an estimate.

Your household includes everyone with whom you share an apartment or house and with whom you are also related by birth, marriage, partnership, or adoption.
Type of income, definition of household, and amounts in response options 
Which of these descriptions best applies to what you have been doing for the last four weeks? Please select only one. Response options
Please indicate whether your household currently can or cannot afford to pay an unexpected, but necessary, expense of… Response options
How satisfied are you with your current employment situation? None
Social In the last 12 months, how often did you eat dinner with [native population name] who are not part of your family? Native population name in question
Please think about the [native population name] in your address book or your phone contacts. With how many of them did you have a conversation – either by phone, messenger chat, or text exchange – in the last 4 weeks? Native population name in question
People sometimes participate in different kinds of groups or associations. For each group listed below, how often do you participate in a group activity? Response options
If you think about members of the groups you are participating in, how many of them are [native population name]? Native population name in question
Many people help each other with everyday favors, such as getting rides, borrowing a little money, or babysitting. In the last 12 months, how often have you provided such favors to [native population name? Native population name in question
Linguistic Please evaluate your own skills in [native language of host country]. How well can you do the following when reading [native language of host country]? Native language in question. Consider whether question is contextually-relevant
Please evaluate your own skills in [native language of host country]?. How well can you do the following when speaking [native language of host country]? Native language in question. Consider whether question is contextually-relevant
Q28 Please evaluate your own skills in [native language of host country]. How well can you do the following when writing [native language of host country]? Native language in question. Consider whether question is contextually-relevant
Please evaluate your own skills in [native language of host country]. How well can you do the following when listening to [native language of host country]? Native language in question. Consider whether question is contextually-relevant
Political How well do you understand the important political issues facing [host country name]? Host country name in question. Consider whether question is contextually-relevant or too sensitive.
In the last 12 months, how often did you typically discuss major political issues facing [host country name] with others? Host country name in question. Consider whether question is contextually-relevant or too sensitive.
In politics, people often talk about a left-right dimension. Can you please tell us if the following sentence is true or not? Response options. Consider whether question is contextually-relevant or too sensitive.
To which of the following parties does the current [head of state] of [host country name] belong? Head of state and host country name in question, response options. Consider whether question is contextually-relevant or too sensitive.
Q35 Which of the following parties occupies the largest number of seats in the [parliamentary body] of [host country name] ? Legislative body and host country name in question, response options. Consider whether question is contextually-relevant or too sensitive.
What is the minimum age that a person must be to vote in a general election in [host country name]? Host country name in question, response options. Consider whether question is contextually-relevant or too sensitive.
There are different ways of trying to improve things in [host country name] or help prevent things from going wrong. During the last 12 months, have you done any of the following? Have you… Host country name in question, response options. Consider whether question is contextually-relevant or too sensitive.