How do we use our data?

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  • MarcusErridge
  • Human Rights PhD Student at the University of Coimbra, Portugal. Research focuses on the human to sanitation, data, demand,and ICTs.
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Re: How do we use our data?

Dear all,

For those interested in this thread, and in sanitation data in general, I am PhD student working on a thesis project looking at new trends in data collection and associated technologies related to access to and demand for sanitation, in the context of SDG 6.

I am reaching out to ask if any of you might be willing to help by taking a short online survey. I am hoping to circulate the survey in the next two weeks. It is intended to gather information from those with experience of working with data in the WASH field. In particular, the questions focus on the use of digital tools in data gathering and validation, as they relate to your work.

Once the survey is ready to go, I will seek advice on the best place to share this through the SuSanA network in a new thread. For now, I just giving those on this thread a quick heads-up that the survey will be going round. Any help or ideas getting this survey to relevant people would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks and best wishes,

Marcus Erridge
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  • JKMakowka
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Re: How do we use our data?

Interesting new website centered around mobile data collection:
www.mdc-toolkit.org/analyse-your-data/

Interesting also their data protection guideline:
www.mdc-toolkit.org/data-protection-starter-kit/
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  • MarcusErridge
  • Human Rights PhD Student at the University of Coimbra, Portugal. Research focuses on the human to sanitation, data, demand,and ICTs.
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Re: How do we use our data?

Thank you John,

I do hope to look at different factors in urban, rural, and peri-urban environments as the reasons people may want toilets may be quite different. I haven't narrowed in on specific geographies as yet. I'm in the process of identifying data tools (MSTs etc.) used, sourcing case studies, and looking for any available secondary data sets people might be willing to share. A long road ahead of me, and any suggestions and wisdom from this forum will be most helpful.

Best wishes,

Marcus

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  • johnpeterarcher
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Re: How do we use our data?

Hi Marcus,

Great to hear about your research. It would be interesting to know if you are focusing on a particular region and if you will be looking at both urban and rural sanitation. Look forward to learning more about your work!

JPA
Co-Founder of Gather: we want to make it possible for the sanitation sector to share data to locate the gaps in service provision.
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  • MarcusErridge
  • Human Rights PhD Student at the University of Coimbra, Portugal. Research focuses on the human to sanitation, data, demand,and ICTs.
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Re: How do we use our data?

Hi everyone,

Thank you for sharing this information.

I am a PhD Human Rights student at the University of Coimbra, Portugal, and am doing some preparation for a research project, to commence next year. My research will focus on the human right to sanitation and the use of mobile technologies, Mobile Survey Tools, and data efforts to quantify demand for toilets in the context of SDG 6.

I found this thread very interesting, and appreciate the various sources cited.

Best wishes,

Marcus Erridge

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  • johnpeterarcher
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Re: How do we use our data?

Hi Elisabeth,

Two great additional resources that we use explain the role of data scientists and the purpose of data dives are here:

What's the difference between a data analyst, scientist and engineer?

What are data dives?

We plan to publish the findings from March's data dive by the end of May. Following this, we are keen to start a broader conversation with sanitation providers to understand of the data that they currently collect (and how they collect it). We would love to host a webinar to introduce this and engage with decision makers who want to use improved data to inform the allocation of their resources.

John
Co-Founder of Gather: we want to make it possible for the sanitation sector to share data to locate the gaps in service provision.
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  • Elisabeth
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Re: How do we use our data?

Hi John,

Thanks for the link to your report about the "data dive" event: gatherhub.org/datadive

Always great to learn new things - the terms "data dive" and "data scientists" were new to me.
So I looked for more into on Wikipedia and found this page about data science:

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Data_science

It says:

Data science is an interdisciplinary field of scientific methods, processes, algorithms and systems to extract knowledge or insights from data in various forms, either structured or unstructured,[1][2] similar to data mining.


It also says:

When Harvard Business Review called it "The Sexiest Job of the 21st Century"[6] the term became a buzzword, and is now often applied to business analytics,[7] or even arbitrary use of data, or used as a sexed-up term for statistics.[8] While many university programs now offer a data science degree, there exists no consensus on a definition or curriculum contents.[7] Because of the current popularity of this term, there are many "advocacy efforts" surrounding it.[9]


Interesting! Please keep us posted how things progress and also how SuSanA as a network/platform can possibly help.

Esther suggested a webinar or guidance note. Would this be useful at this stage? Who would be the target audience?

Regards,
Elisabeth
Dr. Elisabeth von Muench
Freelance consultant on environmental and climate projects
Located in Ulm, Germany
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  • JKMakowka
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Re: How do we use our data?

Very relevant comment from the RWSN blog:

You cannot manage what you do not measure; but should you measure what you cannot manage?

rwsn.blog/2018/04/19/you-cannot-manage-w...t-you-cannot-manage/

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  • eshaylor
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  • I am a WASH engineer who loves nothing more than talking Sh*t. I am currently working for UNICEF on innovation products in the WASH sector that can support the impact of programmes with a focus on children and women.
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Re: How do we use our data?

Hi everyone,

Thanks for the inputs. I think Kris' point about data being anything is important, we forget how much we record and then dont always think responsibly about how we use this information.

Its great to see that Gather are looking at this idea of standardisation and how we can use data as a sector not just within our own organisation. I know with emergency situations it can be tricky ensuring we keep information responsibly and those at risk protected. I personally think we should be looking ahead about this a be prepared for the next few years where we collect even more information/data and then realise we need systems to ensure it is used responsibly.

Maybe SuSanA with support from someone like Gather could lead with some guidance fro sanitation? Is there a webinar/guidance note we could do as a collaboration?

Regards
Esther
Esther Shaylor
Innovation specialist - WASH and Education
UNICEF Supply Division
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  • johnpeterarcher
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Re: How do we use our data?

Hi all,

Really interesting to read everyone's comments and questions - especially on data management and standardisation. We have shared some thoughts below and would love to hear people's thoughts!

KEY DATA CHALLENGE:
We would agree that there are great data collection tools already available. The key challenge is a joined-up, sector-wide data strategy. Without it, too much of the burden for design and implementation of data collection, management and analysis will continue to rest on the shoulders of organisations who should be focused on service delivery.

DATA STANDARDS
Data standards are not impossible to achieve but will take sector-wide collaboration to implement. A key question for the sector to answer is "What are the minimum indicators needed to inform the most important decisions?" This data - from survey design, to collection, to management - can then be standardised for sharing and analysis. Starting with 5-10 indicators will be key to make adoption easy. From there, like-minded organisations operating similar models of service delivery can further standardise additional indicators they are interested in for additional key decisions. The standardisation of urban sanitation data would also make it easier to analyse data alongside reliable, complementary data sets. This reduce reliance - and time - on repeated household surveys.

DATA DIVE
We recently held a data dive in London, UK using an extensive data set from Lusaka, Zambia as our starting point. We have posted the initial findings on our website and will share a fuller report in the coming weeks. There is great potential in the use of data to improve decision making. Data is by no means the silver bullet but it can be much better utilised. We would love to hear from anyone else interested in working together to create a data standard for urban sanitation!
Co-Founder of Gather: we want to make it possible for the sanitation sector to share data to locate the gaps in service provision.
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  • johnpeterarcher
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Re: Urban sanitation data dive: join us!

The Dive

Gather is hosting a data dive for urban sanitation and we are looking for data scientists to join us on 23rd and 24th March!

We want to use urban sanitation data to better understand how we can get toilets to people who need them in emerging cities across the world.

The event will kick-off with a keynote presentation from Lars Schoebitz and Q&A with Gather. Participants will break into small groups and spend the two days answering seven key questions and then discussing progress with the entire group.

The dive will be held in central London. Gather will reimburse all participants with the costs of travel, accommodation and lunch.

Join Us!

Gather are inviting individuals to join us who meet the following description:

- Passionate about using data for good

- Competency in programming languages such as R or Python

- Skilled at creating algorithms and exploratory models to gain actionable insight from large data sets

- Familiar with performing geospatial analysis

- Comfortable communicating solutions and findings, and how they relate to a particular problem

- Domain expertise in urban sanitation is not required, but is always welcome!

If you meet the description above, register your interest here
Co-Founder of Gather: we want to make it possible for the sanitation sector to share data to locate the gaps in service provision.

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  • JKMakowka
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Re: How do we use our data?

Some interesting links on responsible / ethical data use:

www.datakind.org/mezzanine/blog/doing-data-for-good-right/

responsibledata.io/

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