Attitudes to family formation in Scotland

This report summarises the findings of two research studies commissioned externally by the Ministerial Population Taskforce on attitudes to family formation and ideal family size in Scotland. It includes the full report of the qualitative research exploring barriers and enablers of ideal family size

Annex 7 - Technical Notes

1. Desk research formed the first stage of the study. The primary data was collected by an online questionnaire pre-discussion followed by group discussions and in-depth interviews.

2. The target group for this research study was those aged 18 to 45 who have given thought to having children.

3. In total, there were 6 group discussions and 15 in-depth interviews, group discussion lasted between 60 and 90 minutes and in-depth interviews approximately 30 minutes. Each group will contained approximately 6 participants.

4. Group discussions and interviews took place online using Zoom platform.

5. Respondents were recruited by telephone by Progressive's skilled in-house team of qualitative recruiters. These recruiters worked to predetermined quota controls to ensure that the final sample reflected the requirements of the project. All respondents were screened to ensure that they had not participated in a group discussion or in-depth interview relating to a similar subject in the last 6 months prior to recruitment.

6. An incentive of £40 compensated respondents for their time during the discussion and £25 was given for completing the pre-discussion survey.

7. Each recruiter's work was validated as per the requirements of the international standard ISO 20252. Therefore, all respondents were subject to validation, between recruitment and the date of the group discussion or in-depth interview, or on the day of the group discussion/in-depth interview. Validation involved respondents completing a short questionnaire asking pertinent profiling questions, and checking that they have not participated in similar research in the past 6 months.

8. All research projects undertaken by Progressive comply fully with the requirements of ISO 20252, the UK GDPR and the MRS Code of Conduct.


9. The outputs from the project included:

  • A PowerPoint report of findings from desk research
  • Top-line findings reported in PowerPoint
  • A Word report of overall findings

10. Anonymous verbatim comments are included in reporting.

11. Please note that, due to the small sample sizes involved and the methods of respondent selection, qualitative research findings do not provide statistically robust data. However, this type of research facilitates valid and extremely valuable consumer insight and understanding.



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