A randomized trial of different trajectories of financial incentives to optimize recruitment and retention in research
Difficulties recruiting and retaining patients in randomized clinical trials (RCTs) have long been recognized as a major barrier to successfully evaluating medical interventions. Empirical analyses conducted to date all suggest that financial incentives can ethically increase study enrollment, and that larger incentives are more effective than smaller ones. However, it is unknown how to structure the trajectory of financial incentives to maximize participant enrollment and retention in longitudinal studies. We propose a 5-arm randomized controlled trial using the web-based platform MTurk to test the relative effectiveness of different study payment schedules on enrollment and attrition rates.