Ruedin, D. (2015), Increasing Validity by Recombining Existing Indices: MIPEX as a Measure of Citizenship Models. Social Science Quarterly, 96: 629–638. doi: 10.1111/ssqu.12162
Researchers often reuse existing data and indices even in cases where theory demands different measures. Here, I argue that with little additional effort, it is possible to increase the validity of research by recombining individual indicators of existing indices.
This approach is demonstrated by using data from the widely used Migration Integration Policy Index (MIPEX), recombining some of the 148 indicators to approximate Koopmans et al.'s (2005) two-dimensional conception of citizenship models.
The recombined MIPEX data match the desired conception of citizenship models and can be applied to all countries covered in the MIPEX. For the first time theoretically predicted ethnic-pluralistic citizenship models (segregationism) are observed.
The approach presented can be applied to different data and research questions, leading to research making use of more appropriate data that match specific research rather than relying on what is readily available—thus increasing validity.