In this multidisciplinary research area we study all aspects related to language and surveys. We aim to improve the translation of survey questionnaires by conducting translation process research, investigating the use of machine translation and post-editing (see here more information and, exploring how to adopt methods from computational linguistics and corpus linguistics in survey research.

We develop methods to compare questionnaires in two languages with respect to format features and measurement properties and we study the role of the language of administration of a survey in cross-cultural comparability.

We have developed the MCSQ. The MCSQ comprises 306 different questionnaires in the source language (English) and their translations into Catalan, Czech, French, German, Norwegian, Portuguese, Spanish, Russian, as well as 21 language varieties (e.g., Swiss-French, Austrian-German). It is part of the Social Sciences and Humanities Open Cloud (SSHOC) project.

The last version 3 (entitled Rosalind Franklin) includes 766.000 sentences (more than 4 million tokens) from the European Social Survey (ESS), the European Values Study (EVS), the Survey of Health Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE), and the Wage Indicator survey (WIS). In total, there are 160 ESS, 76 EVS, 52 SHARE and 18 WIS questionnaires in the tool.


In 2018 we developed an app to download the data of every ESS round, as well as the integrated ESS1-8 file, with all the variable and value labels in Spanish. Data can be downloaded in SPSS and Stata format.

Research projects:

Social Sciences and Humanities Open Cloud (SSHOC), European Union’s Horizon 2020 project. PI: Diana Zavala-Rojas. Additional information 

Selected Publications:

Zavala-Rojas, D. (2019) Computational and corpus linguistic tools in questionnaire translation: guidelines to adopt and test for innovations in survey translation. Deliverable 3.8 of the SERISS project funded under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme GA No: 654221. Available at:


Zavala-Rojas, D., & Saris, W. E. (2018). Measurement Invariance in Multilingual Survey Research: The Role of the Language of the Questionnaire. Social Indicators Research, 140(2), 485-510.
Zavala-Rojas, D. (2018). Exploring Language Effects in Cross-cultural Survey Research: Does the Language of Administration Affect Answers About Politics? Methods, Data, Analysis, 12(1), 24. doi: 10.12758/mda.2017.16
Zavala-Rojas, D., Saris, W. E., & Gallhofer, I. N. (2018). Preventing Differences in Translated Survey Items using the Survey Quality Predictor. In T. P. Johnson, B.-E. Pennell, I. A. L. Stoop, & B. Dorer (Eds.), Advances in Comparative Survey Methods: Multinational, Multiregional and Multicultural Contexts (3MC) (pp. 357–384). New York: Wiley Series in Survey Methodology. doi: 10.1002/9781118884997.ch17
Zavala-Rojas, D. (2017). Report of the state of the art on tools in computational linguistics and computer-aided translation for enhancing survey translation. Deliverable 3.6 of the SERISS project funded under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme GA No: 654221. Access to:
Zavala-Rojas, D. (2016). Measurement equivalence in multilingual comparative survey research. Universitat Pompeu Fabra.