GIS Data Use

Examples of how geographic tools can improve data use.

GIS Data Use in Bangladesh 

MEASURE Evaluation collaborated with the Centre for Urban Studies to map the slums surrounding the six largest cities in Bangladesh in 2005. Researchers identified and collected data from more than 9,000 slums, and then used GIS to produce detailed maps that mark each slum’s geographic boundaries, population size and distribution, water sources, legal status, and other information. These comprehensive maps have enabled policymakers to target slum populations with far more efficiency and precision than in the past.

Case Study: Using GIS Information to Target Health Services in Slum Areas in Bangladesh

Improving HIV Programs in Tanzania with Mapping

MEASURE Evaluation collaborated with USAID/Tanzania to build capacity for local staff and subcontractors providing HIV programs in Iringa district, Tanzania. After participating in a workshop to learn basic GIS and mapping skills, the community stakeholders identified and mapped site locations of high-risk behaviors, as well as sites for HIV prevention and care and treatment supported and implemented by USG partners, donors, and the local government. The data and maps resulting from the activity are being combined with PLACE Lite data from semi-annual and annual PEPFAR reports to determine catchment areas, population served, and services provided by each site.

Report: Using Geospatial Analysis to Improve Resource Allocation for HIV Programs in Iringa Region, Tanzania

Mapping Health Service Availability in Nicaragua

The Nicaraguan Health Facility Survey (NHFS) mapped the location of and recorded characteristics of every health facility in Nicaragua. MEASURE Evaluation researchers input these data into a GIS and used a new data analysis technique, Kernal Density Estimation (KDE), to calculate accurate ratios of health facilities and facility staff members to nearby populations. In addition to uncovering important salient features of Nicaragua’s health system, this study provides new validation and testing of KDE in the public health setting.

OVC Mapping

MEASURE Evaluation’s OVC mapping activity has evaluated the available data for OVC programs in 12 countries to assess the potential role for mapping in decision making and data management. The lessons learned from the activity can be valuable for all PEPFAR programs. OVC programs and services are a complex topic and no single data set can provide a complete picture of the population, its needs, the causes and services required. Rather it is necessary to rely on data from a variety of sources and a variety of topics. Evaluation of the available OVC data in the countries reviewed showed the necessity of a strong data infrastructure for effective decision making. Communication and data sharing across USG programs and beyond is essential to capitalize on the available data infrastructure. 

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