This paper is part of a special issue on survey research methods during the COVID-19 crisis. We thank Ulrich Kohler and Sebastian Rinken for their commentary.
The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has a massive impact on society. To curb the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, unprecedented containment measures are being taken by governments around the world. These measures and the fear of the disease itself are likely a_ecting the economy, social inequality, mental and physical health, and even people’s perception of good democratic governance. Equally unprecedented is the speed at which these massive changes take place and the lack of statistical evidence that accompanies them. Within days of the first containment measures in Germany, the German Internet Panel (GIP) launched the Mannheim Corona Study (MCS), a daily rotating panel study of the general adult population of approximately 3,600 respondents. Its data and reports now inform the crisis cabinet of the German government and are the basis for groundbreaking social and economic research. This paper gives insights into the MCS methodology and data quality.