Prior to starting collecting secondary data, the analytical plan needs to be in place, which will clearly define what data will be collected, for whom, and for what purpose.
1. Design your research
This includes defining the analytical framework and analysis plan. Read more about analytical frameworks, in the analytical frameworks section. Questions to think through in this phase include:
- What is known, or still unknown? Review literature and synthetise information to learn what is known, what is uncertain, and what is unknown;
- Who is going to use the output(s), for what and when do they need it? Understand your primary audience, know what they need and what their time frame is;
- What are the key questions? Clarify the main questions and the analytical objectives;
- How will information be collected and used and what effect or consequence might it have? Consider ethical issues and the factors that can influence or affect the analysis;
- What approaches, methods and techniques will provide qualitative and credible analysis in the given timeframe? Choose the best analytical approach;
- What data are required to answer the questions and which sources will be used? Select data requirements and target the source of your data collection;
- Who will you collaborate with? When and how? Find useful partners for collaboration;
- What will the end product(s) look like? Frame end product(s) and draft outline(s);
- What activities, resources and contingencies should be planned for? Plan activities, contingencies, and budgets;
- What is the workplan? Detail workplan, activities, deliverables and milestones.
- Other issues to think through can be the scale of the SDR (is it triggered by a sudden onset, is it part of a larger mission, etc.), the size of the team, and what roles should be represented in the team. Guidelines on this can be found here.