Piloting Survey Protocols

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All Field Protocols should be tested in Stage 2 – Content-focused pilot. Revise as needed, and then pilot again during Stage 3 – Data-focused pilot. All protocols should be finalized before enumerator training.

Guidelines

Interview scheduling

  • Is there a particular time of day when respondents are more / less likely to be available?
  • What is the most effective way to communicate with respondents and schedule appointments?

Access to infrastructure

  • Is there electricity?
    • How frequent are blackouts? Are generators available?
    • Do teams need to carry fuel and/or generators?
  • Will there be any internet access?
    • Are mobile internet connections (dongles) available?
    • Is there mobile data coverage?
  • How is the coverage of mobile phone networks?
    • Check availability of any common networks, advise field teams accordingly

Sampling

  • Does the sampling protocol work well in the field? (for more details on developing the protocol, see Impact Evaluation Sampling)
  • Is the replacement strategy effective?
  • What challenges are enumerators likely to face? What clarifications need to be made in the Enumerator Training?
  • If working from an existing sampling frame, is it up to date?
  • If doing a listing, how much time should be built into the field plan? How will you ensure that no sampling units (e.g. households, firms, traders) are skipped?

Geo-data

  • Will you use the tablet or separate GPS?
    • If GPS unit, test protocol for saving with filenames that include unique ID linked to respondent.
    • How long does it take to lock in a signal? How accurate is the data point?

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This article is a part of the topic Survey Pilot.

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