All GEM data collection is centrally coordinated. GEM data experts work closely with National Teams and survey vendors to guarantee the quality of the data. All surveys are subject to a range of checks before data collection begins. The resulting data is scrutinised repeatedly before release. These processes, developed over many years, ensure that GEM data is of the very highest quality.

The data collection engine powering GEM research is composed of two complementary tools - the Adult Population Survey (APS) and the National Expert Survey (NES).

Adult Population Survey (APS)

The APS explores the role of the individual in the lifecycle of the entrepreneurial process. The focus is not only on business characteristics, but also on people’s motivation for starting a business, the actions taken to start and run a business, as well as entrepreneurship related attitudes.

The APS is administered to a minimum of 2000 adults in each economy, ensuring that it is nationally representative. Some economies have far larger samples than this, providing regional and city-level insights.

The core of the APS has remained consistent over the years, providing a valuable longitudinal perspective. However, there is a ‘Special Topic’ section, which changes annually and explores aspects of entrepreneurship not already covered in the core APS. National Teams are also able to add questions to their survey, to investigate issues of particular national relevance.

National Expert Survey (NES)

GEM argues that entrepreneurship dynamics can be linked to conditions that enhance (or hinder) new business creation. It identifies nine factors that are believed to have a significant impact on entrepreneurship, known as the Entrepreneurial Framework Conditions (EFCs).

The purpose of the NES is to assess the status of the EFCs in each economy at a given point in time. It is administered to a minimum of 36 carefully chosen experts, who are asked to respond to a series of statements on a Likert scale, rating them from completely false to completely true.

For detailed information on our methodology please consult our Knowledge Base.