Remote Data Collection

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Description of Tool Class

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Often peacebuilders are based at a distance from the community they serve and need to collect information in order to do their work. In these circumstances working with a local partner to conduct in-person interviews is an option, but remote data collection processes provide an interesting alternative. These tools (sometimes called CATI - Computer Assisted Telephone Interviewing) allow for the broad dissemination of a survey through Mobile Phones through automated processes. As with other Data Collection tools, they allow the user to take Data Based Action, Understand Audiences, and Understand Conflict by informing decision-making on a remote audience and providing information that may otherwise be difficult or costly to collect.

Pros of Remote Data Collection:

  • Option to reach large numbers of respondents (hundreds or thousands)
  • Relatively low cost - pay per SMS or IVR minute

Cons of Remote Data Collection:

  • Lack of face-to-face interaction
  • Difficult to incentivize completion of long surveys
  • More barriers to the collection of qualitative data

Remote Data Collection Learning Resources:

  • Remote Food Security Monitoring is a free online course provided by mVAM and Leiden University which covers the remote data collection project life cycle, options for remote data collection tools, and questionnaire design.


Tools in this Tool Class


Top contributors to this page: DerekPeaceTech

Supports Objectives(s) Data Based Action, Understand Audiences, Understand Conflict