The WMS 2011 is the sixth of a series that started in 2005. It is part of the concerted effort by NSO to provide relevant information for monitoring the welfare status of the people of Malawi. The survey is designed to collect the minimum amount of information necessary for the identification and classification of vulnerable groups of households within the society. It is the latest in a series of instruments that have been developed to provide policy-makers with household and community level information for policy formulation and evaluation. Its questionnaire is purposefully concise and is designed to collect in addition to household’s characteristics, information which measures access, utilization and satisfaction with social services. The sampling plan for WMS 2011 is designed to provide indicators at district level. This is in line with the decentralization program of the Malawi Government.
The 2011 Welfare Monitoring Survey (WMS) is the sixth in the series and is part of the Integrated Household Survey (IHS) programme being implemented by National Statistical Office (NSO). The programme includes a comprehensive integrated household survey every five years and lighter annual WMSs between the five years. WMS is a follow-up to the Core Welfare Indicators Questionnaire Survey (CWIQ) that was undertaken by the National Statistical Office (NSO) in 2002. Unlike the CWIQ, which was basically a World Bank instrument, WMS has been adapted to suit local requirements. The basic objective of WMS is to provide rapid information on selected core indicators in the population that would enable monitoring changes on a yearly basis. The specific objectives are to provide: -
- Indicators for monitoring living conditions of people in Malawi.
- Indicators for monitoring progress and attainment of goals outlined in the Malawi Growth and
- Development Strategy (MGDS) II and the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
- A regular database for socio-economic research.
Like all previous WMSs, the 2011 series collected data from a representative sample at national, regional and district level. In all series, emphasis is on producing quick results. Hence data entry commences as soon as the first batch of questionnaires is received from the field. Data entry is done through scanning using the optical Eyes and Hands software.
Unit of Analysis
The 2011 WMS focused on the following areas:
- Characteristics of household members
- Child health
- Housing conditions and amenities
- Food Security
- Child protection
National, Regional and District level
Producers and sponsors
Agriculture Statistics Division
Malawi National Statistical Office (NSO)
The 2011 WMS was based on a random sample that covered 14 000 households drawn from all the districts of the country.
The Sample for the 2011 WMS was designed to provide estimates at national, regional and district levels. The sampling frame consist of Enumeration Areas (EA) from 2008 Malawi Population and Housing Census (PHC). During the 2008 PHC, each district was subdivided into EAs and each EA as a whole was classified as urban or rural. The 2011 WMS sample was selected using a stratified, two-stage cluster design, with EAs being the sampling units for the first stage. A total of 554 clusters were included in the sample. The clusters were not allocated among the districts in proportion to their contribution to the national population since this would have left out smaller districts and with too few clusters to represent them hence some districts were oversampled. Households comprised the second stage of sampling. A total of 25 households were systematically selected in each of the sample enumeration areas. Sampling of households was without replacement.
Deviations from the Sample Design
Data collection commenced on 23rd August 2011 and was completed in February 2012 with a break in December and early January due to unavailability of fuel.
The sample covered covered 14 000 households drawn from all the districts of the country.
The sample for 2011 WMS was not self weighting. A set of cluster weights were calculated to obtain unbiased estimates at national, regional and district levels.
Dates of Data Collection
Data Collection Mode
- There were two levels of supervision. National level concerned with overall coordination and technical oversight on all survey activities. The field level ensured collection of high quality data.
- Management was done by a team of senior officers at NSO. This team was also responsible for technical and administrative coordination of activities throughout the survey.
- Training of field staff for the main Welfare Monitoring Survey was conducted over a 2 week period in August 2011. Since the majority of enumerators had experience in field work, the training concentrated on areas demanding thorough understanding of the content of the questionnaire and practice on weighing under five children.
Data Collection Notes
Ten Mobile teams carried out data collection for the survey. Each team consisted of 6 enumerators and a field team supervisor who reported to the National Supervisors. Each team was allocated a vehicle with space accommodating 6-7 people. There were sixty enumerators engaged to collect data in the field, nine of whom were permanent staff from the Agriculture Division of NSO. The rest were temporary enumerators who had participated in the earlier series of the survey and other related surveys.
Malawi National Statistical Office
A questionnaire was used to collect information about every individual in the households selected for the survey. This was to a large extent similar to other WMSs in order to ascertain information on demography, health, education, employment, child health and nutritional status comparable between the two WMSs. As in the previous WMSs, electronic scales were used for weighing under five children and measuring boards were used to get children’s heights. This anthropometrical information was used to assess nutritional status of children.
Questionnaires used include:
- The Household Form
- The Woman/Caretaker Questionnaire
- The Child Protection and Early Child Development Questionnaire
These are available as external resources.
Data processing involved:
- Editing and scanning questionnaires using Eyes and Hands software
- Conducting consistency checks and cleaning data in SPSS
- Designing tabulation plans in SPSS
- Table editing in Microsoft Excel
- Report generation using Microsoft Word
Use of the dataset must be acknowledged using a citation which would include:
- the Identification of the Primary Investigator
- the title of the survey (including country, acronym and year of implementation)
- the survey reference number
- the source and date of download
The user of the data acknowledges that the original collector of the data, the authorized distributor of the data, and the relevant funding agency bear no responsibility for use of the data or for interpretations or inferences based upon such uses.