An intention survey in Melut

As I mentioned in a previous entry about the relocation in Bor, what to do out of the PoCs was (and still is) one of the most debated issues on humanitarian policy in South Sudan.

When talking about a phasing out strategy, there were security, logistical, political considerations to put in the picture. And there were, of course, the intentions of the displaced people themselves.

Assessing the intention of the population is not an easy exercise, and is usually done by means of focus group discussions and other qualitative methods. Quantitative surveys are implemented (people working at this organization know a thing or two about them), but they require time to be organized, delivered, and analysed.

In early 2016 I was working in Melut county, and among the settlements my organization was working there was the small PoC site that used to be there at the time. Its size – a little more than 100 households – made it possible and relatively easy to implement a quantitative survey covering the whole population.

What was I doing there? I designed the survey, in consultation with my protection colleagues, and then using that nice piece of tool that is ODK to code it. I then analysed the data and produced graphs and maps. The factsheets, the data and the questionnaire are available  here. Due to organizational reasons, we had to use Excel to create the graphs (QGIS for the maps) and Publisher to put them together, which proved quite cumbersome and gave a final result that is somehow clumsy, although good enough at the end of the day.

We preferred to publish the results as soon as possible with a reasonable product, rather than fine tuning and over polishing it. As in humanitarian context you need yesterday the information that will be available tomorrow, I think this was the right choice.

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