Despite the considerable insights Community Voices has generated, the study is not without its limitations. First, language proved to be a considerable limitation, in that we were not able to provide full translations of the survey for the different language groups in our study areas. Surveyors with appropriate language competency did provide some translation support where they could, but this was not consistent. Moreover, our interviews were conducted in English. Given the high proportion of residents for whom English is their second language, future iterations of this research would benefit from a greater attention to this issue.
Second, while we achieved a sample of survey respondents that was largely similar to our overall survey population, we also were not able to achieve gender parity in our West-end interviews. This was due to COVID-19, which forced us to end in-person interviews in April 2020. This limited us to only 2 male interviewees out of 11 interviews. We faced similar issues around representation in the East-end but were able to do more targeted recruitment to expand the pool, which the realities of public health measures prevented.
Third, our survey is not representative of the entire inner suburbs. While our aspiration is to better understand the views of Toronto’s inner suburbs, and we developed themes that can forward this understanding, our survey and interviews can only represent with a high degree of accuracy seven neighbourhoods, not the entire former cities of Scarborough and Etobicoke (and certainly not North York). Even so, the consistency in responses across neighbourhoods and control groups may suggest that they capture larger trends in opinions from wider geographic spaces.
Finally, our study would have benefited from including a downtown control group. Given time and budget constraints, we were not able to replicate this study within neighbourhoods in the Old City of Toronto/downtown core. This means we cannot say with confidence what views are distinctive to the inner-suburbs in particular, compared to residents of other parts of Toronto.