Information Gaps: Filling critical data voids in in some of Africa's most restrictive environments

Erin Satterlee, Natalie Forcier

Introduction

Carrying out robust and comprehensive research in challenging environments can prove to be prohibitively costly and risky. Conflict and poor infrastructure networks can cause seemingly insurmountable challenges that render efficient and comprehensive data collection impossible. Nevertheless, gathering data and analysing the impact on vital humanitarian and development interventions - often designed to target the most vulnerable communities in the most challenging contexts -is in increasingly high demand, as donors are stepping up calls for evidence to justify aid interventions. As programmatic budgets are increasingly constrained, implementing partners are being required to do more with less, underscoring the need to identify new and innovative solutions to gathering data cost effectively and comprehensively to provide a strong evidence base of programmatic impact.