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Remotely Accessible Instrumented Monitoring of Global Development Programs: Technology Development and Validation

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Author(s): Evan A. Thomas | Zdenek Zumr | Jodi Graf | Carson A. Wick | James H. McCellan | Zachary Imam | Christina Barstow | Kelly Spiller | Michael Fleming

Journal: Sustainability
ISSN 2071-1050

Volume: 5;
Issue: 8;
Start page: 3288;
Date: 2013;
Original page

Keywords: instrumentation | monitoring | evaluation | analytics | internet | data

ABSTRACT
Many global development agencies self-report their project outcomes, often relying on subjective data that is collected sporadically and communicated months later. These reports often highlight successes and downplay challenges. Instrumented monitoring via distributed data collection platforms may provide crucial evidence to help inform the sector and public on the effectiveness of aid, and the on-going challenges. This paper presents the process of designing and validating an integrated sensor platform with cellular-to-internet reporting purposely targeted at global development programs. The integrated hardware platform has been applied to water, sanitation, energy and infrastructure interventions and validated through laboratory calibration and field observations. Presented here are two examples: a water pump and a household water filter, wherein field observations agreed with the data algorithm with a linear fit slope of between 0.91 and 1, and an r-squared of between 0.36 and 0.39, indicating a wide confidence interval but with low overall error (i.e., less than 0.5% in the case of structured field observations of water volume added to a household water filter) and few false negatives or false positives.

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