October 1, 2015

Accelerating and improving survey implementation with mobile technology: Lessons from PMA2020 implementation in Lagos, Nigeria

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Authors: Linnea Zimmerman, Funmilola OlaOlorun, & Scott Radloff

Journal: African Population Studies, 29(1). 2015

Large-scale nationally representative surveys have traditionally been implemented using paper surveys, necessitating secondary steps of data entry and management after data collection. Errors occurring during data collection or entry may not be rapidly identified. The Performance Monitoring and Accountability 2020 (PMA2020) project implementation in Lagos, Nigeria demonstrates four advantages to integrating mobile technology into survey implementation. First is the rapidity of data collection; data collection lasted six weeks from mapping/listing to final collection – and, since completed surveys are uploaded to a cloud-based server, identification of errors can occur in near real-time. Second, time-stamping and GPS marking allow for improved quality assurance. Third, the inclusion of GPS coordinates creates new opportunities to analyze relationships of distance with use of health services. Fourth, PMA2014/Lagos utilized a 10% resample of households to validate data collection allowing for rapid identification of questionable data and quality control.