Offline Surveys in Africa: A Case Study

Kipp Chambers
2 min read

What do you do when you need to perform field surveys in remote areas of Africa?

If you’re like most, you print out hundeds (or sometimes thousands) of paper surveys and send field workers out to collect them and return them. When they finally DO come back, you spend a huge amount of time cleaning the data, then painstakingly enter it into a database (or a spreadsheet). Only then can you begin to do the necessary data analysis, which naturally takes quite a bit of time itself.

In other words, it’s not the most efficient process in the world.

And that’s where Raoul de Villiers and Tandi Reilly saw their opportunity. They wanted to improve the speed and efficiency of social surveys performed in remote and rural areas. The iPad seemed like the ideal tool to accomplish offline surveys – but none of the existing survey tools out there seemed to meet their specific needs.

So they built their own.

Using SurveyGizmo’s survey API, Raoul and Tandi built an iPad survey app that did exactly what their field workers needed. It includes everything from tabbed browsing to geo-referencing (which allows them to not only use location data in their survey analysis, but also to verify that their field workers are actually going to the specified locations and collecting the appropriate data).

We think it’s awesome. And that’s why we’re featuring them as “survey heroes” on our site.

“Survey Gizmo provides an efficient, user-friendly platform to automate scientific surveys, to store and analyse scientific data for improved quality control and reporting,” says Tandi. “Using iPads increases interviewee interactions, stimulates conversation, improves the speed of interviews, and keeps everyone interested. It’s just so fun.”

Want to read more about how World-Wize Surveys is revolutionizing field surveys with the help of the SurveyGizmo API? Head over to the World-Wize Surveys case study.

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