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The importance of data quality

Checking the accuracy of vital events records

Methods and tools to evaluate the quality of vital statistics

Tabulation and generation of vital statistics for national policy

Presentation, communication and dissemination of vital statistics

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Presentation, communication and dissemination of vital statistics

Defining the target audiences

To get the information across, the first thing to define is the target audience. The communication strategy should select the right narrative, language and visual and graphic devices that will suit that audience.

Fortunately, there are many publications, tools and websites available that focus on how to effectively communicate statistics so that the main messages are understood. Communication strategies for data release need to consider using special events and launches of major reports and products to get additional attention from the media and their users. 

Some agencies have their key audiences written into their mandate – for example, statistical offices often have a mandate to provide data to other government agencies and to the general The role of the media, as a communication vehicle that translates statistics to the general used to be extremely important, but has diminished with the arrival of the internet, where anyone can go directly to the source. Today, there is a more direct relationship between the producers and their users through the websites that allow communication with multiple users at the same time. This makes the job of the statistical offices more complex, as they now need to be aware of all the different users and their various needs. Thus, having an effective and comprehensive communication strategy has become increasingly important.

Target audiences and communication channels for vital statistics

Government officials

  • Face-to-face meetings
  • Policy briefs and brochures
  • Executive summaries
  • Media
  • Websites
  • Discussion forum

Program managers

  • Dissemination workshops
  • Monthly/quarterly updates
  • Summary reports
  • Executive summaries
  • Audiovisual presentations

General public

  • Magazines
  • Newspapers
  • TV and radio
  • Social media

Academia and researchers, technical agencies

  • Peer reviewed articles
  • Research micro-datasets
  • Oral presentations
  • Websites 

Civil society, NGO, professional associations

  • Fact sheets
  • Brochures 
  • Summary briefs
  • Audiovisual material

Donors and funding organisations

  • Full research reports
  • Publications and brochures
  • Audiovisual material

Read more

Health Information Systems Knowledge Hub and World Health Organization (2012).  Strengthening civil registration and vital statistics for births, deaths and causes of death: Resource kit. World Health Organization, Geneva.

UNECE.  Making data meaningful guides.


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