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Fifteen Years of LSMS-ISA: Longitudinal Surveys for Research and Development

November 14, 2023
Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
LSMS-ISA 15 brings together top-tier researchers and high-level policymakers from within Africa .

LSMS-ISA: 15 years of impact in development

In view of the 15th year of the World Bank's LSMS-Integrated Surveys on Agriculture (LSMS-ISA) initiative, Living Standards Measurement Study (LSMS), in partnership with the Tanzania National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) and the Office of the Chief Government Statistician (OCGS), Zanzibar are organizing a conference titled “Fifteen Years of LSMS-ISA: Longitudinal Surveys for Research and Development.”

The event brings together top-tier researchers and high-level policymakers from within Africa to advance the dialogue on the research, policy, and development impacts of the LSMS-ISA initiative in Sub-Saharan Africa in general and Tanzania in particular. The keynote speaker for the conference will be Prof. Douglas Gollin, the Jason P. and Chloe Epstein Professor of Economics at Tufts University.

The conference will conclude with a panel discussion focused on (a) distilling the LSMS-ISA experience in the areas of statistical capacity building, and data use for research and policy, and (b) the role that longitudinal multi-topic household surveys can play against the background of climate change, future large-scale health shocks, and intensifying fragility and conflict.

The Living Standards Measurement Study (LSMS) is a household survey program housed within the World Bank's Development Data Group that provides technical assistance to national statistical offices (NSOs) in low- and middle-income countries on the design and implementation of multi-topic household surveys. The program also develops and promotes the adoption of innovations and standards in survey data collection to support evidence-based policymaking.

Since 2008, the program has been implementing the LSMS-Integrated Surveys on Agriculture (LSMS-ISA) initiative, which has been supporting unique systems of longitudinal surveys that are designed to improve the understanding of household and individual welfare, livelihoods, and smallholder agriculture in Africa. Partnering with national statistical offices (NSOs) in Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Malawi, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Tanzania and Uganda, the LSMS-ISA has supported over 33 country-owned, nationally-representative, multi-topic longitudinal household survey rounds, amounting to more than 160,000 household interviews across Africa and leading to more than 6,400 publications that have been informed by the data from the LSMS-ISA-supported surveys. In the words of Professor Douglas Gollin (Tufts University), “any objective look at the uses and impact of the LSMS-ISA program leads to the inescapable conclusion that the current effort has had a significant impact on research in development economics – and correspondingly on global knowledge.”

The conference will feature research papers that are sole- or co-authored by African researchers that are using the data from any of the surveys that have been supported by the LSMS-ISA initiative in eight partner countries. Preference will be given to African presenters.


  • SUBMISSION DEADLINE: September 15, 2023