The Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey, Round 4 (MICS4) is the forth round of MICS surveys, previously conducted around 1995 (MICS1), 2000 (MICS2), and 2005-2007 (MICS3). MICS was originally developed to support countries measure progress towards an internationally agreed set of goals that emerged from the 1990 World Summit for Children.
The fourth round of Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys (MICS4) is scheduled for 2009-2011 and survey results are expected to be available from 2010 onwards. MICS4 data allow countries to better monitor progress toward national goals and global commitments, including the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) as the target year 2015 approaches.
Information on more than 20 of the MDG indicators is being collected through MICS4, offering one of the largest single sources of data for MDG monitoring. MICS4 continues to address emerging issues and new areas of interest, with validated, standard methodologies in collecting relevant data. It also helps countries capture rapid changes in key indicators.
The Republic of Macedonia Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) 2011 was conducted as part of the fourth global round of MICS surveys (MICS4). The survey was conducted in cooperation between UNICEF and the Institute of Public Health of the Republic of Macedonia with the data collection being carried out by private research company IPSOS Strategic Puls. Financial and technical support was provided by UNICEF, with additional financial support from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).
The 2011 Macedonia Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey primary objectives are:
- To provide up-to-date information for assessing the situation of children and women in Macedonia;
- To furnish data needed for monitoring progress toward goals established in the Millennium Declaration and other internationally agreed upon goals, as a basis for future action;
- To contribute to the improvement of data and monitoring systems in Macedonia and to strengthen technical expertise in the design, implementation, and analysis of such systems;
- To generate data on the situation of children and women, including the identification of vulnerable groups and of disparities, to inform policies and interventions.
Kind of Data
Sample survey data [ssd]
Unit of Analysis
- v01: Edited, anonymous datasets for public distribution.
The scope of the 2011 Macedonia Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey includes:
- Household: household listing form, education, water and sanitation, household characteristics, child labour and child discipline;
- Women: woman's background, child mortality, desire for last birth, maternal and newborn health, illness symptoms, contraception, unmet need, attitudes toward domestic violence, marriage/union, tobacco and alcohol use and life satisfaction;
- Children: child's age, birth registration, early childhood development, breastfeeding, care of illness, immunization and anthropometry;
- Child Disability administered to mothers or caretakers for all children aged 2-9 years;
- Vaccinations at a health facility.
The survey covered all de jure household members, all women aged between 15-49 years, all children under 5 living in the household, and all children aged 2-9 years.
Producers and sponsors
Institute of Public Health of the Republic of Macedonia
United Nations Children’s Fund
United Nations Children’s Fund
Financial and technical support
United Nations Population Fund
The primary objective of the sample design for the Macedonia Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey was to produce statistically reliable estimates of most indicators, at the national level, for urban and rural areas, and for the eight regions (Vardar, East, Southwest, Southeast, Pelagonia, Polog, Northeast, Skopje) of the country. Urban and rural areas in each of the eight regions were defined as the sampling strata.
A multi-stage, stratified cluster sampling approach was used for the selection of the survey sample.
The target national sample size for the Macedonia MICS was 4,703 households.
For the calculation of the sample size, the key indicator used was the incidence of stunting among children aged 0-4 years. The resulting number of households was 14520 households which is the sample size needed to provide sufficient number of children under 5 for drawing reliable conclusions. In order to reduce the sample size with keeping the estimation reliability for most of the indicators, the sample was divided into groups of households with children under 5 and households without children under 5. The average number of households selected per cluster for the Macedonia MICS was determined as 15 households, based on a number of considerations, including the design effect, the budget available, and the time that would be needed per team to complete one cluster.
In total, 300 clusters were allocated to the regions with the number of sample clusters proportional to the population of the individual regions.
The 2002 census frame was used for the selection of clusters. Census enumeration areas were defined as primary sampling units (PSUs), and were selected from each of the sampling strata by using systematic pps (probability proportional to size) sampling procedures, based on the estimated sizes of the enumeration areas from the 2002 Population Census. The first stage of sampling was completed by selecting the required number of enumeration areas from each of the eight regions separately by urban and rural strata.
Since the sampling frame (the 2002 Population Census) was not up-to-date, a new listing of households was conducted in all the sample numeration areas prior to the selection of households. For this purpose, listing teams were formed, who visited each enumeration area, and listed the occupied households. Listing activities were conducted by the same company that was responsible for the data collection. The same teams that were selected for the data collection process were used for listing. The listing took place in February 2012. All teams were given the descriptions and maps of the selected clusters. The teams visited all households in the sample clusters asking for the number of members, number of women aged 15-49 and for number of children under age 5.
Lists of households with household members were prepared by the listing teams for each enumeration area. The number of selected households per enumeration area was different, depending on the total number inhabitants in the enumeration area and the number of households with children under 5 found in the enumeration area.
The sampling procedures are more fully described in "Macedonia Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) 2011 - Final Report" pp.147-148.
Of the 4,703 households selected for the sample, 4,397 were found to be occupied. Of these, 4018 were successfully interviewed for a household response rate of 91 percent. In the interviewed households, 4,024 women (aged 15-49 years) were identified as eligible. Of these, 3,831 were successfully interviewed, yielding a response rate of 95 percent within interviewed households. There were 1,398 children under age 5 listed in the household questionnaire. Questionnaires were completed for 1,376 of these children yielding a response rate of 98 percent within interviewed households. Overall, response rates of 87 percent and 90 percent are calculated for the interviews with women and children under age 5.
The Macedonia Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey sample is not self-weighting. Essentially, by allocating equal numbers of households to each of the regions, different sampling fractions were used in each region since the size of the regions varied. For this reason, sample weights were calculated and these were used in the subsequent analyses of the survey data.
The major component of the weight is the reciprocal of the sampling fraction employed in selecting the number of sample households in that particular sampling stratum and PSU.
A second component in the calculation of sample weights takes into account the level of non-response for the household and individual interviews. The adjustment for household non-response is equal to the inverse value of:
RRh = Number of interviewed households in stratum h/ Number of occupied households listed in stratum h
After the completion of fieldwork, the response rate was calculated for each sampling stratum. These were used to adjust the sample weights calculated for each cluster.
The non-response adjustment factors for women’s and under-5’s questionnaires are applied to the adjusted household weights. Numbers of eligible women and under-5 children were obtained from the roster of household members in the Household Questionnaire for households where interviews were completed.
The design weights for the households were calculated by multiplying the inverse of the probabilities of selection for all sampling stages for the households in each enumeration area. These weights were then standardized (or normalized), one purpose of which was to make the weighted sum of the interviewed sample units equal the total sample size at the national level. Normalization was achieved by dividing the full sample weights (adjusted for nonresponse) by the average of these weights across all households at the national level. This is performed by multiplying the sample weights by a constant factor equal to the unweighted number of households at the national level divided by the weighted total number of households (using the full sample weights adjusted for nonresponse). A similar normalization procedure was followed in obtaining standardized weights for the women’s and under-5’s questionnaires. Adjusted (normalized) weights varied between 0.25 and 4.23 in the 300 sample enumeration areas (clusters).
Sample weights were appended to all data sets and analyses were performed by weighting each household, woman or under-5 ,with these sample weights.
During the data collection, in a number of clusters, the interviewers were not able to conduct the survey in some of the sampled households as the household members live outside of the country most of the year. In 17 clusters where more than 20% of empty households were identified, it was decided to replace these households with a random sample of in-scope households selected from the same segment and second-stage stratum (with and without children). A total of 101 households were replaced in three regions: Southwest, Polog and Northeast region.
The proposed sample replacement procedure affected the second stage component of the weights. The first stage component of the weight (calculated as the inverse of the probability of selection of the primary sampling unit) remained the same. Based on the sample design, a separate weight was calculated for the strata of households with and without children within each sample segment.
The Sample Weights are more fully described in "Macedonia Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) 2011 - Final Report" pp.149-150.
Dates of Data Collection
Data Collection Mode
There is one supervisor for each of the 12 data collection teams in the field.
Data Collection Notes
Fieldwork training was conducted for 12 days in March/April 2011. Training included lectures on interviewing techniques and the contents of the questionnaires, and mock interviews between trainees to gain practice in asking questions. Towards the end of the training period, trainees spent two days practicing interviews in urban and rural areas near Struga city.
12 teams collected the data. Each team comprised of four interviewers, one editor, one measurer and a supervisor. Fieldwork began in April 2011 and concluded in July 2011.
IPSOS Strategic Puls
The questionnaires for the Generic MICS were structured questionnaires based on the MICS4 model questionnaire with some modifications and additions. Household questionnaires were administered in each household, which collected various information on household members including sex, age and relationship. The household questionnaire includes household listing form, education, water and sanitation, household characteristics, child labour and child discipline.
In addition to a household questionnaire, questionnaires were administered in each household for women age 15-49, children under age five and children aged 2-9 years. For children, the questionnaire was administered to the mother or primary caretaker of the child.
The women's questionnaire includes woman's background, child mortality, desire for last birth, maternal and newborn health, illness symptoms, contraception, unmet need, attitudes toward domestic violence, marriage/union, tobacco and alcohol use and life satisfaction.
The children's questionnaire includes child's age, birth registration, early childhood development, breastfeeding, care of illness, immunization and anthropometry.
The questionnaire form for child disability contained the ten question module for identifying children with an increased risk of disability.
The questionnaire form for vaccinations at health facility was used to check the consistency in recording the immunizations between the documents kept in the health facilities and the immunization cards in the households.
The questionnaires were based on the MICS4 model questionnaire. From the MICS4 model English version, the questionnaires were customized, translated into Macedonian and Albanian, back translated into English, and pre-tested in Skopje in March 2011. Based on the results of the pre-test, modifications were made to the wording and translation of the questionnaires.
In addition to the administration of the questionnaires, fieldwork teams measured the weights and heights of children under 5 years of age. Details and findings of these measurements are provided in the respective sections of the report.
Data were entered using the CSPro software. The data were entered on 12 microcomputers and carried out by 20 data entry operators and 10 data entry supervisors. In order to ensure quality control, all questionnaires were double entered and internal consistency checks were performed. Procedures and standard programs developed under the global MICS4 programme and adapted to the Macedonia questionnaire were used throughout. Data processing began almost simultaneously with data collection in May 2011 and was completed in August 2011. Data were analysed using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) software program, Version 18, and the model syntax and tabulation plans developed by UNICEF were used for this purpose.
Estimates of Sampling Error
The sample of respondents selected in the Macedonia Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey is only one of the samples that could have been selected from the same population, using the same design and size. Each of these samples would yield results that differ somewhat from the results of the actual sample selected. Sampling errors are a measure of the variability between the estimates from all possible samples. The extent of variability is not known exactly, but can be estimated statistically from the survey data.
The following sampling error measures are presented for each of the selected indicators:
- Standard error (se): Sampling errors are usually measured in terms of standard errors for particular indicators (means, proportions etc). Standard error is the square root of the variance of the estimate. The Taylor linearization method is used for the estimation of standard errors.
- Coefficient of variation (se/r) is the ratio of the standard error to the value of the indicator, and is a measure of the relative sampling error.
- Design effect (deff) is the ratio of the actual variance of an indicator, under the sampling method used in the survey, to the variance calculated under the assumption of simple random sampling. The square root of the design effect (deft) is used to show the efficiency of the sample design in relation to the precision. A deft value of 1.0 indicates that the sample design is as efficient as a simple random sample, while a deft value above 1.0 indicates an increase in the standard error due to the use of a more complex sample design.
- Confidence limits are calculated to show the interval within which the true value for the population can be reasonably assumed to fall, with a specified level of confidence. For any given statistic calculated from the survey, the value of that statistic will fall within a range of plus or minus two times the standard error (r + 2.se or r – 2.se) of the statistic in 95 percent of all possible samples of identical size and design.
For the calculation of sampling errors from MICS data, SPSS Version 18 Complex Samples module has been used. The results are shown in the tables that follow. In addition to the sampling error measures described above, the tables also include weighted and unweighted counts of denominators for each indicator.
Sampling errors are calculated for indicators of primary interest, for the national level, for urban and rural areas, and for the regions. Six of the selected indicators are based on household members, 10 are based on women and 18 are based on children under 5. All indicators presented here are in the form of proportions.
A series of data quality tables are available to review the quality of the data and include the following:
- Age distribution of the household population
- Age distribution of eligible and interviewed women
- Age distribution of children under 5 in household and children under 5 questionnaires
- Women’s completion rates by socio-economic characteristics of households
- Completion rates for under-5 questionnaires by socio-economic characteristics of households
- Completeness of reporting
- Completeness of information for anthropometric indicators
- Heaping in anthropometric measurements
- Observation of under-5’s birth certificates
- Observation of vaccination cards
- Presence of mother in the household and the person interviewed for the under-5 questionnaire
- Selection of children age 2–14 years for the child discipline module
- School attendance by single age
The results of each of these data quality tables are shown in appendix D in document "Macedonia Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) 2011 - Final Report" pp.172-179.
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Survey datasets are distributed at no cost for legitimate research, with the condition that we receive a description of the objectives of any research project that will be using the data prior to authorizing their distribution.
Use of the dataset must be acknowledged using a citation which would include:
- the Identification of the Primary Investigator
- the title of the survey (including country, acronym and year of implementation)
- the survey reference number
- the source and date of download.
Institute of Public Health of the Republic of Macedonia and United Nations Children’s Fund. Macedonia Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) 2011, Ref. MKD_2011_MICS_v01_M. Dataset downloaded from [url] on [date].
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