This research adapted the Survey on Income and Living Conditions (SILC) instrument of the European Union (EU), a standardized household survey used regularly to collect data from the general Serbian population on income, poverty, social exclusion, and living conditions (“general SILC”). The survey instrument was adapted to include questions on discrimination in the workplace, trust, and overall life satisfaction of LGBTI people in Serbia. Between February and April 2017, 998 self-identified LGBTI people answered the adapted “LGBTI SILC” online. Online engagement was chosen to encourage a large number of people to participate privately and confidentially, which is a recognized strategy for reaching LGBTI people who otherwise may not be willing or feel safe to reveal their identity in face-to-face interviews. The survey was disseminated using a network of local nongovernmental organizations in Serbia, and respondents were made aware of the survey through social networks, advertisements, and dating apps. The responses were weighted, and a sample matching procedure was conducted using a covariate balancing propensity score to allow a comparison between the two samples: the “LGBTI SILC”, and responses from the Serbian population to the “general SILC”. The samples were matched on the basis of: age, sex assigned at birth, educational attainment, marital status, region, and area of residence (urban or rural). This generated, for the first time, a data set on the socioeconomic status of LGBTI persons that allows a comparison to Serbia’s general population.
Producers and sponsors
IPSOS Strategic Marketing
ERA – LGBTI Equal Rights Association for the Western Balkans and Turkey
Civil Society partner
The Williams Institute UCLA School of Law
Nordic Trust Fund
The survey was conducted with a self-selected, nonprobability sample. LGBTI people are a hard-to-reach population with at least two characteristics that make standard random sampling procedures inappropriate: the absence of a sampling frame (i.e., the characteristics of the total population are unknown) and the strong need for privacy protection. As a result, it cannot be said that respondents to the survey represent the LGBTI population as a whole. To address this concern, at least in part, the sample was weighted based on a study of the literature.
Representative surveys of LGBTI populations are difficult to conduct and online surveys are considered an appropriate method. LGBTI people are a hard-to-reach population due to at least two characteristics that make standard random sampling procedures inappropriate: the absence of a sampling frame (i.e., the characteristics of the total population are unknown) and the strong requirement for privacy protection given the stigma and risk of violence LGBTI people often face. This survey was conducted with a self-selected, nonprobability sample. As a result, it cannot be said that respondents represent the whole LGBTI population in Serbia. To address this concern, at least in part, the sample was weighted based on a study of the literature. Weighting sample characteristics to population targets to correct for over- and/or under-sampled groups can be effective in providing generalizable results, though the process is sensitive to the weighting strategy. Due to the lack of administrative data on LGBTI populations, the weighting strategy took into account only sex assigned at birth and sexual orientation.
Dates of Data Collection
Data Collection Mode
Computer Assisted Personal Interview [capi]
At the World Bank, the team was led by Georgia Harley, Nicholas Menzies, and Runyararo Gladys Senderayi (Task Team Leaders), with the unwavering support of Dominik Koehler (Project Coordinator).
IPSOS Strategic Marketing
The questionnaire is provided as an external resource.
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
World Bank. 2017. Serbia - LGBTI Survey on Income and Living Conditions (LGBTI-SILC) 2017. Ref: SRB_2017_LGBTI-SILC_v01_M. Downloaded from [url] on [date]
DDI Document ID
Development Economics Data Group
The World Bank
Documentation of the DDI
Date of Metadata Production
DDI Document version
Version 01 (July 2019)