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Mobile SMS survey data management and preservation

Presenter 1
Inna Kouper
Indiana University
Presenter 2
Charitha Madurangi
Indiana University
Presenter 3
Kunalan Ratharanjan
Indiana University
Presenter 4
Tom Evans
Indiana University
Presenter 5
Beth Plale
Indiana University

The growing availability of mobile phones provides new opportunities for data collection, particularly in developing countries where it is challenging to reach respondents in rural areas. Text messaging or short message service (SMS) allows for high-frequency, automated data collection with large sample sizes at relatively low cost. However, the use of SMS technology also raises critical data quality issues, strongly suggesting the need for ongoing data management that can help evaluate robustness of responses over time, select appropriate tools for storage and data analysis and avoid dependency on specific platforms and standards.

In this presentation we will discuss our approach to long-term management and preservation of mobile SMS survey data that are part of a larger project that examines adaptation of small-scale farmers in Africa to climate change. We will describe the development of an automated pipeline to ingest weekly data from a cloud-based platform to local data servers, while maintaining security and confidentiality. We will also demonstrate tools to enhance survey metadata and monitor and visualize data health and trends. The audience will be invited to discuss how robust data management can serve both the needs of the research team and the needs of potential data users and stakeholders.

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