The GeSiD study is the first nationwide scientific survey on health and sexuality in Germany. The Institute for Sex Research, Sexual Medicine and Forensic Psychiatry of the University Medical Centre Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE) conducts GeSiD under the direction of Prof. Dr. Peer Briken and Dr. Arne Dekker. The institute is one of Europe’s leading sex research institutions and has been investigating sexual behaviour and experience for over six decades.
For guaranteed high scientific standard and excellent data protection, we cooperated with the social research institute Kantar Emnid. They were commissioned to conduct the interviews. The study is funded by the German Federal Center for Health Education (BZgA). GeSiD received ethical approval by the ethics committee of the Hamburg Chamber of Psychotherapists.
For the first time, GeSiD collects important core data on the sexual experiences, sexual attitudes and relationships of adults in Germany and thus enables a comprehensive assessment of the sexual health of the population. This data is indispensable for the development of care and preventive measures.
From October 2018 to September 2019, 4,955 adults aged 18 to 75 years were surveyed throughout Germany. For this purpose, 200 cities and municipalities were selected that were regionally representative of the Federal Republic of Germany. Target persons were randomly selected to take part in the study by means of address records of the communal residents‘ registration offices. A random sample determined in this way provides a representative picture of the population living in Germany. Since the 18 to 35-year-olds were considered particularly important in regards to key research questions, they were oversampled.
An important quality feature in survey research is the response rate, which provides information on how many of the persons contacted were willing to be interviewed. It was calculated according to the AAPOR criteria (American Association for Public Opinion Research) and is 30.2 % (AAPOR Response Rate 4); the cooperation rate is 37.9 % (AAPOR Cooperation Rate 4). This is a very good response rate for comparable studies in Germany.
All target persons received a personal letter in which the study’s objectives were explained. In addition, they received information on anonymity, the origin of the address and guaranteed data privacy.
The survey was conducted as a computer assisted personal interview and lasted 53 minutes on average. Women were interviewed by women and men by men.
The results help support the Federal Centre for Health Education (BZgA) in its work and produce target group-specific information material on sexual issues for women and men. Services for sex education and family counselling are to be improved in order to provide suitable support for people with sexual problems and promote sexual health in Germany. All current publications of the GeSiD study can be found here.
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The GeSiD study is accompanied and supported by an international scientific advisory board. The board supports the UKE team in an advisory capacity. Its tasks include to discuss the scientific work and to ensure that the study is conducted at an international level.
We are very pleased to have won the following members for our scientific advisory board:
Prof. Dr. Nicola Döring: University Professor for Media Psychology and Media Conception at the TU Ilmenau, Germany.
Prof. Dr. Aleksandar Stulhofer: Professor of Sociology at the Faculty of Human and Social Sciences, University of Zagreb, Croatia.
Prof. Dr. Bente Træen: Professor of Health Psychology at the University of Oslo, Norway.