BY JAIROS SAUNYAMA
THE Zimbabwe National Statistical Agency (ZimStat) has gone digital in its data collection for agriculture and livestock survey (ALS) which is underway across the country.
This is the first time ZimStat has switched to the computer-assisted personal interviews (CAPI) since 1983, marking a shift from the traditional paper-assisted personal interviews (PAPI).
ZimStat production statistics director Matiwonesa Phiri told journalists in Marondera at the weekend that the ALS programme would enhance livestock data collection.
“This is the first time ZimStat is conducting the ALS using CAPI. In using the technology, interviewers ask questions to respondents and then record them using a computer or tablet, instead of recording the responses on paper,” she said.
“As an organisation whose mandate is to produce official statistics in the country, there is need for us to move with time and modernise our statistics production processes. Among the advantages of using CAPI in the ALS is the reduction in turn-around time for producing agriculture statistics as data entry takes place during the interview process.”
The survey for the year 2020/21 started on May 1 and is expected to end on June 11.
The enumerators, who were conducting the survey, were equipped with modern technological gadgets as they captured data from farmers on Monday.
The data collected through ASL is used mainly for assessing the food security position at household and national levels.
The data is also used to compile statistics on the contribution of agriculture industry to the country’s gross domestic product as well as for formulation of government agricultural policies.
ZimStat has been conducting the ALS since 1983, with the programme initially designed to cater communal lands only.
The survey was then expanded to cover all sectors from 2003 after the accelerated land reform programme.
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