Mobile Technology


As part of UNHCR’s initiative to improve the collection of nutritional data we increasingly recommend using android smartphones to collect data in the field. Collecting data on mobile phones provides numerous advantages over conventional paper-based systems.


Experiences have shown that using smartphones to collect data – with the advantages of having pre-coded skip patterns, setting ranges and restrictions – the quality of our surveyors’ collected data has improved!


By setting ranges on questionnaire responses, and being able to set automatic skip-patterns, a lot of the cleaning of irrelevant information is done during data collection, eliminating the time-consuming step of doing this after the fact. With automatic skip-patterns, we make sure that the right questions are asked to the relevant age groups and respondents.


In this section, you will find an introduction to all aspects of a Mobile Data Collection (MDC) project divided by theme:

First browse through the Advantages and Challenges associated with MDC in order to make sure you are well prepared for the project. Required Human Resources lays out the requirements in terms of staffing and skills. Under Equipment, you will find information on the equipment required for an MDC project including phones, computer, etc. Mobile Phone Questionnaires introduces the mobile phone questionnaires and how to proceed with questionnaire adaptations. Setting up the System gives you an overview of how everything should be installed and what updates to check for before a survey starts. Field implementation of an MDC survey is discussed in Training, Data Collection and Supervision. Under Transfer of Data, you will find information on how the data is sent from the phones to the database.


For each theme, you will find in Tools  tutorials and other tools to help you with your MDC survey. You will also find answers to most frequently asked questions.



ricon_download    Downloads

SENS Mobile Data Collection                                                                                 fticon_video

Use of Smart Phone in UNHCR SENS Surveys Brief                                 fticon_pdf