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  • 1.
    Bell, Andrew
    et al.
    University of Sheffield.
    Fairbrother, Malcolm
    Umeå universitet, Samhällsvetenskapliga fakulteten, Sociologiska institutionen.
    Jones, Kelvyn
    University of Bristol.
    Fixed and random effects models: making an informed choice2019Inngår i: Quality and quantity, ISSN 0033-5177, E-ISSN 1573-7845, Vol. 53, nr 2, s. 1051-1074Artikkel i tidsskrift (Fagfellevurdert)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper assesses the options available to researchers analysing multilevel (including longitudinal) data, with the aim of supporting good methodological decision-making. Given the confusion in the literature about the key properties of fixed and random effects (FE and RE) models, we present these models’ capabilities and limitations. We also discuss the within-between RE model, sometimes misleadingly labelled a ‘hybrid’ model, showing that it is the most general of the three, with all the strengths of the other two. As such, and because it allows for important extensions—notably random slopes—we argue it should be used (as a starting point at least) in all multilevel analyses. We develop the argument through simulations, evaluating how these models cope with some likely mis-specifications. These simulations reveal that (1) failing to include random slopes can generate anti-conservative standard errors, and (2) assuming random intercepts are Normally distributed, when they are not, introduces only modest biases. These results strengthen the case for the use of, and need for, these models.

  • 2.
    Bell, Andrew
    et al.
    Sheffield Methods Institute, University of Sheffield.
    Jones, Kelvyn
    School of Geographical Sciences, University of Bristol.
    Fairbrother, Malcolm
    Umeå universitet, Samhällsvetenskapliga fakulteten, Sociologiska institutionen.
    Understanding and misunderstanding group mean centering: a commentary on Kelley et al.'s dangerous practice2018Inngår i: Quality and quantity, ISSN 0033-5177, E-ISSN 1573-7845, Vol. 52, nr 5, s. 2031-2036Artikkel i tidsskrift (Fagfellevurdert)
    Abstract [en]

    Kelley et al. argue that group-mean-centering covariates in multilevel models is dangerous, since—they claim—it generates results that are biased and misleading. We argue instead that what is dangerous is Kelley et al.’s unjustified assault on a simple statistical procedure that is enormously helpful, if not vital, in analyses of multilevel data. Kelley et al.’s arguments appear to be based on a faulty algebraic operation, and on a simplistic argument that parameter estimates from models with mean-centered covariates must be wrong merely because they are different than those from models with uncentered covariates. They also fail to explain why researchers should dispense with mean-centering when it is central to the estimation of fixed effects models—a common alternative approach to the analysis of clustered data, albeit one increasingly incorporated within a random effects framework. Group-mean-centering is, in short, no more dangerous than any other statistical procedure, and should remain a normal part of multilevel data analyses where it can be judiciously employed to good effect.

  • 3.
    Fairbrother, Malcolm
    Umeå universitet, Samhällsvetenskapliga fakulteten, Sociologiska institutionen.
    Free Traders: Elites, Democracy, and the Rise of Globalization2019Bok (Fagfellevurdert)
  • 4.
    Fairbrother, Malcolm
    Umeå universitet, Samhällsvetenskapliga fakulteten, Sociologiska institutionen.
    Free Traders: Elites, Democracy, and the Rise of Globalization2019Bok (Fagfellevurdert)
    Abstract [en]

    Today's global economy was largely established by political events and decisions in the 1980s and 90s, when scores of nations opened up their economies to the forces of globalization. In Free Traders, Malcolm Fairbrother argues that politicians' embrace of globalization was much less motivated by public preferences than by the agendas of businesspeople and other elites. Drawing on over one hundred interviews with decision-makers, and analyses of archival materials from Canada, Mexico, and the U.S., Fairbrother tells the story of how each country negotiated and ratified two agreements that substantially opened and integrated their economies: the 1989 Canada-U.S. and trilateral 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement. Contrary to what many commentators believe, these agreements-like free trade elsewhere-were based less on mainstream, neoclassical economics than on the informal, self-serving economic ideas of business. While the stakes in the globalization debate remain high, Free Traders uses a comparative-historical approach to sharpen our understanding of how globalization arose in the past to provide us with clearer trajectory for how it will develop in the future.

  • 5. Fairbrother, Nichole
    et al.
    Hart, Trevor A.
    Fairbrother, Malcolm
    Umeå universitet, Samhällsvetenskapliga fakulteten, Sociologiska institutionen.
    Open Relationship Prevalence, Characteristics, and Correlates in a Nationally Representative Sample of Canadian Adults2019Inngår i: Journal of Sex Research, ISSN 0022-4499, E-ISSN 1559-8519, Vol. 56, nr 6, s. 695-704Artikkel i tidsskrift (Fagfellevurdert)
    Abstract [en]

    Open relationships are those in which individuals agree to participate in sexual and/or emotional and romantic interactions with more than one partner. Accurate estimates of the prevalence of open relationships, based on representative, unbiased samples, are few, and there are none from outside of the United States. We present findings from a nationally representative sample of 2,003 Canadian adults, administered in 2017 via an online questionnaire. Overall, 2.4% of all participants, and 4.0% of those currently in a relationship, reported currently being in an open relationship. One-fifth of participants reported prior engagement in an open relationship, and 12% reported open as their ideal relationship type. Men, compared with women, were more likely to report prior open relationship engagement and to identify open as their ideal relationship type. Younger participants were more likely both to engage in and to prefer open relationships. Relationship satisfaction did not differ significantly between monogamous and open relationships. Having a match between one's actual relationship type and one's preferred relationship type was associated with greater relationship satisfaction. Findings suggest that, while currently only a small proportion of the population is in an open relationship, interest in open relationships is higher, particularly among younger adults, and open appears to be a viable and important relationship type.

  • 6. Schmidt-Catran, Alexander W.
    et al.
    Fairbrother, Malcolm
    Umeå universitet, Samhällsvetenskapliga fakulteten, Sociologiska institutionen.
    Andreß, Hans-Jürgen
    Multilevel Models for the Analysis of Comparative Survey Data: Common Problems and Some Solutions2019Inngår i: Kölner Zeitschrift für Soziologie und Sozialpsychologie, ISSN 0023-2653, E-ISSN 1861-891X, Vol. 71, s. 99-128Artikkel i tidsskrift (Fagfellevurdert)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper provides an overview over the application of mixed models (multilevel models) to comparative survey data where the context units of interest are countries. Such analyses have gained much popularity in the last two decades but they also come with a variety of challenges, some of which are discussed here. A focus lies on the small-N problem, influential cases (outliers) and the issue of omitted variables at the country level. Summarizing the methodological literature, the paper provides recommendations for applied researchers when possible or otherwise points to the more detailed literature. Some solutions for the small-N problem and omitted variable bias are discussed in detail, recommending the pooling of multiple survey waves to increase statistical power and to allow for the estimation of within-country effects, thereby controlling for unobserved heterogeneity. All issues are illustrated using an empirical example with data from the European Social Survey. The online appendix provides detailed syntax to adopt the presented procedures to researchers’ own data.

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