• Factsheet
  • 26 May 2015

Stories of data use in developing countries

Open Data: A journey of discovery in Nepal A short documentary about a journalist, Gyanu Sharma, seeking data to help him create a better future for his so

Data is being used by citizens, civil society groups, NGOs, private institutions, donors and governments across the world to help improve development outcomes.  This series of case studies shares evidence of demand for better data and highlights lessons about the use of data by local actors to eradicate poverty and improve lives.

Open Data: A journey of discovery in Nepal

A short documentary about a journalist, Gyanu Sharma, seeking data to help him create a better future for his son.

Govind Shrestha, Research and Advocacy Officer, Nepal – WaterAid

“We use the information to ensure government, NGOs and other stakeholders are working in areas with low WASH coverage rather than concentrating on districts that already have high coverage”

Read about Govind Shrestha’s work for WaterAid Nepal to develop guidance and advocacy aimed at getting better allocation of resources to Nepal’s water and sanitation sector.


Joseph Cheayan, Programme Associate, Liberia – Institute for Research and Democratic Development (IREDD)

“Our budget analysis work enabled us to find out that money provided by the European Union for the health sector wasn’t being disbursed by the Ministry of Finance.”

Read about Joseph Cheayan’s work on building capacity of community organisations to undertake budget monitoring and increasing engagement with parliamentarians.


John Kinuthia, Research Analyst, Kenya – International Budget Partnership (IBP)

“There doesn’t seem to be a process for systematically putting public data out there. I have to go and find what I need.”

Read about John Kinuthia’s work analysing public finance in Kenya, using the information to support civil society organisations, journalists and citizens to participate in budget processes.


Kubai Edward Ikiugu, Research Monitoring and Evaluation Officer, Kenya – Marie Stopes Kenya (MSK)

“Evidence is essential in helping us improve how we deliver our services. The data is used to help ensure that our services are targeted and shaped to meet the communities who have the greatest need or who are the most marginalised”

Read about Kubai Edward Ikiugu’s work on clinic data to evaluate the impact of MSK on key health indicators within Kenya and provide evidence that greater attention is needed from governments and donors.


Madhu Marasini, Joint-Secretary, Nepal – International Economic Cooperation  Coordination Division, Ministry of Finance (IECCD)

“The Aid Management Platform has supported obtaining data in a myriad of ways that help us gain a diverse perspective on the Nepalese aid scenario.”

Read about how Madhu Marasini’s role working with international aid has used data to improve resource allocations for Nepal’s long-term sustainable development.


Prakash Neupane, Technology Ambassador, Nepal – Open Knowledge Foundation Network

“Budget data is something that matters very much to people because any adjustment in it has a direct impact on individual household incomes and living standards.”

Read about Prakash Neupane’s work on a project to open up government budget and spending data.


Sarala Maharja, Project Coordinator, Nepal – Campaign for Human Rights and Social Transformation (CAHURAST)

“Local people are the ones most vulnerable to injustice and inequality, so strengthening their capacity to use information and speak against misconduct is an important way to set up grounds for social change.”

Read about Sarala Maharja’s experiences of using data to empower local citizens to monitor development projects in their local area.


 Wolde Wesa, Programme Officer, Kenya – Kenyan National Taxpayers Association (NTA)

“It is about giving parents and their children a feedback mechanism to have their voices heard and it is a means to hold the head teacher, teachers and School Management Committee to account.”

Read about Wolde Wesa’s experiences using citizen-generated data to improve school performance in Kenya.