So far 14 questionnaires have been returned (which represents a very small sample size), by various individuals currently involved in Ghost Hunting teams and Paranormal Investigation groups.
The following is a preliminary breakdown of some of the findings so far.
Age & Sex composition
Of this sample 50% is male and 50% female, with an average age of 40 years (with a range og 28-52 years).
Years of Investigation
The average number of years spent actively investigating the paranormal for the respondents is 6 (with a range of 0.5-15 years).
57% of respondents consider the work they undertake to be scientific (i.e. utilise specialist equipment in the search for quantifiable data), while 48% do not consider their work to be scientific.
In this sample, so far, 57% of respondents are regularly assisted by mediums on their investigations, while the remaining 48% are not.
71% of respondents have not undertaken any formal parapsychological training, with only 29% having done so.
Belief in Ghosts and Direct Experience
Of the respondents so far 65% claimed belief in ghosts or spirits (although there were considerable differences in interpretation and definition of what such entities actually are), 21% reported that they were uncertain as to whether they believed in the existence of ghosts, and 14% did not believe in the existence of ghosts at all.
79% of respondents claimed to have had direct experience of ghosts/apparitions, 14% claimed no direct experience, while 7% were uncertain as to whether they had had direct experience or not.
Religiosity and Spirituality
Only 29% of respondents reported that they were religious/spiritual, while the remaining 71% reported that they were not religious.
Life after Death
64% of respondents reported that they believe in life after death (although interpretations and definitions differed between individuals), the remaining 36% do not.
36% of respondents consider themselves to have some form of psychic ability, the remaining 64% did not.
Other Paranormal Experiences
57% reported that they have had other paranormal experiences (e.g. OBE, NDE, UFO sighting, Pre-Cognition, Sleep Paralysis, etc.), while 43% had no other paranormal experiences.
57% of the respondents actively investigate other paranormal phenomena (e.g. UFOs, cryptozoology, etc), while 43% are only engaged in the investigation of ghost type phenomena.
Although this is only preliminary data, insights into the sociology of ghost hunting groups are already being revealed.
A more detailed analysis of the data will be available shortly, hopefully with a larger sample size, that will discuss emergent patterns in the data: for example the relationship between seance attendance and belief in ghosts, religious beliefs and direct experience of the paranormal and so on. Specific case studies of respondents will also be discussed.
I will consider the relationship between conclusions drawn from this data set and those derived from other studies in order to explore the wider context, for example with regard to sex composition, personality types, boundaries and so on.
If you consider yourself a Ghost Hunter, or Paranormal Investigator, and would like to assist me in this research, then simply download this QUESTIONNAIRE, fill it in and return it to firstname.lastname@example.org
Your help would be greatly appreciated.