Update from the Field

1 06 2013

I started writing this post a week ago while flying from Maputo to Nampula in Mozambique, but the usual challenges of setting up a large-scale research project delayed my intentions. One challenge is finding/installing a good Internet connection, which we overcame by purchasing a number of Movitel USB modems that are working surprisingly well.

I’m in Nampula with a team of researchers from Virginia Tech (Eric Vance, Emily Van Houweling, and Marcos Carzolio), Stanford University (Jenna Davis and Kory Russel), and WE Consult (our in-country partner) to undertake a follow-up study for an evaluation of the Millennium Challenge Corporation’s rural water program in the province. We undertook the baseline study in 2011 and plan to complete the follow-up study over the next two months.

Over the past week, we have begun our enumerator training that has focused primarily on reviewing each module of the household survey (which consists of more than 600 questions that will be navigated using logic) and practicing skills such as how to measure a child and use GPS devices (that are needed to find the same households we surveyed in 2011). Next week we will continue to refine the various surveying instruments with the enumerators (who are mostly local to Nampula) and begin practicing how to take water samples, among other activities. We will soon select our team leaders from the twenty enumerators we are training, who will each receive specific training on the various research protocols we will be using.

We have established a base camp in a house in the city of Nampula, which is proving to be a pleasant place to work/live, even if there is no water most days. There are several major construction projects happening in the city that have severely constrained the water supply that only comes once a day for several hours if we are lucky.

I have included some pictures below of the activities so far. I will post some more following the pilot study that is planned for later next week.

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