Quality statistics are critical for development interventions to be effective. However, they are hard to obtain in fragile situations as fragility affects the ability to collect data in many ways. From exposure to violence or to other dangers, such as disease, collecting information isn’t possible using traditional means without putting enumerators at risk. There is also the association of conflict with poor-quality roads, inadequate telecommunication infrastructure and, at times, populations that are hostile to representatives of the central government.
Fragile situations can also complicate data collection in other ways such as people being displaced or the lack of sampling frames. A new report, Data Collection in Fragile States, presents innovations developed to deal with common challenges. The report presents innovations, both methodological as well in data collection, to address the data gaps in fragile situations. Through examples, the book shows that it is possible to collect high-quality data in fragile settings and such data collection need not be expensive but also warns that technology is not a panacea for all data collection issues.