New Paper in Survey Practice

The Importance of Cleaning Data During Fieldwork: Evidence from Mozambique

Mark Seiss, Eric A. Vance, and Ralph P. Hall

Abstract: In many small-scale surveys with limited resources, data editing is usually conducted by a statistician after data collection has concluded. There are many benefits of including a statistician in the data editing process during the data collection phase of the survey. This paper describes a procedure for survey implementation of small-scale surveys in which the statistician identifies and edits the data as they are collected. We implemented this procedure during a household survey conducted in Maputo, the capital of Mozambique, Africa, and detailed data on the editing process was recorded. This article analyzes this data to gain insight into the effects on the collected data. The results of the analysis indicate that the edited data may be of higher quality than data without edits.


Leveraging Statistics to Improve Data Quality

In the video below, Eric Vance and I are joined by several of our graduate students to describe how we developed the concept of an “on-the-ground statistician” to advance our data collection and cleaning practices in relation to large-scale household surveys.