Acta Geographica Sinica ›› 2016, Vol. 71 ›› Issue (6): 899-913.doi: 10.11821/dlxb201606001

• Theory and Method •     Next Articles

Application of questionnaire survey method in human geography studies in China

Dongsheng ZHAN1,2(), Wenzhong ZHANG1(), Jianhui YU1, Yunxiao DANG1,2, Xiaoyun LI1,2   

  1. 1. Key Laboratory of Regional Sustainable Development Modeling, Institute of Geographic Science and Natural Resources Research, CAS, Beijing 100101, China
    2. University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
  • Received:2015-09-21 Revised:2016-01-04 Online:2016-06-30 Published:2016-07-04
  • Supported by:
    Key Project of National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.41230632;National Natural Science Foundation of China,No.41201169]


As an important tool for microscopic studies in human geography, questionnaire survey method has been widely used in developing people-oriented urban concepts. In order to support a scientific and standardized application of questionnaire survey method in human geography studies in China, this paper explored previous studies on the application of questionnaire survey method in human geography in China using the literature metrological method. Taking the survey of Beijing Livable City in 2013 as a case study, we illustrated the design framework and sampling strategy in the questionnaire survey procedure, and summarized some key application areas of questionnaire survey method subsequently. The results showed that: On the positive side, with the extension of human geography, questionnaire survey method tended to be a key approach to collecting data in a wide range of related research topics. However, most studies chose mathematical and statistical models or GIS spatial analysis as the principal method, while the scientific use of questionnaire survey method are often neglected, especially in the sampling design. We suggested that human geographers should pay more attention than before to the whole process of sampling scheme design, which is composed of questionnaire collection method, sampling method, sampling frame selection and the determination of sample size in order to obtain data efficiently. Lastly, questionnaire survey method was widely used in research areas including time and space behavior, living environment, urban society, tourist behavior and rural household behavior. Finally, based on the research framework of questionnaire survey method, we put forward five schemes to improve the application of questionnaire survey method in human geography studies.

Key words: questionnaire survey method, human geography, literature metrology, livable city, China