Data reconciliation

Different actors in charge of monitoring
At national level, it is common for different line ministries to monitor national access to drinking-water and sanitation. The National Statistics Office (NSO) is usually responsible overall for all national data, however individual line-ministries responsible for actual service provision often have their own monitoring mechanisms. Where NSOs largely rely on household surveys and census data, line-ministries often track progress based on recorded outputs of the sector. [read more…]

Measuring different aspects
Line ministries responsible for water supply and sanitation often measure the provision of drinking-water supply and sanitation facilities and/or the number of service connections. NSOs tend to use household surveys and censuses to measure the actual use of drinking-water and sanitation facilities by household members. This difference is important as a service once provided may no longer be operational, or simply may not be used for various reasons. [read more…]

Using different definitions of access
NSOs and different line ministries may use different definitions of access and these, in turn, may differ from the definitions used for the MDG coverage estimates. Understanding the differences in definitions is key to the process of comparing national and MDG coverage estimates. [read more…]

How coverage is measured for MDG monitoring
Since the MDG targets are based on the use of improved sanitation and drinking-water facilities, the JMP relies on nationally representative household surveys and censuses usually conducted by NSOs. In order to be able to compare coverage rates and progress among countries, standard definitions of access are used across all countries. [read more…]

Reconciling the JMP and country estimates

Since 2007, the JMP has worked with a number of pilot countries to:

  • develop a common understanding of monitoring methods;
  • explore the possibility of harmonizing or aligning monitoring approaches;
  • encourage greater collaboration among national agencies, and between national agencies and the JMP.

Once definitions are clarified at national level, it is possible to make national and the JMP definitions correspond better. The JMP objective is to ensure comparability between countries. Efforts by the JMP to reconcile data have advanced understanding of the different approaches taken by countries. However, it is not within the JMP mandate or capacity to carry out such a process in every country. The JMP is therefore collaborating with other country-based organizations to pursue this task.