Data visualization requires more than design skills. You need both technical and critical thinking skills to create the best visuals for your audience. It is important to match your visualization to your viewer’s information needs. You should always be asking yourself: “What are they looking for?”

1. Understand your audience before designing your visualization
The first and most important consideration is …

With the rapidly growing field of monitoring and evaluation, there are many technology tools that are designed to help the many roles of M&E practitioners. The fastest growing area has been digital data collection, which currently uses mobile phones and portable GPS systems. Reporting has become easier with all the tools for data visualizations and data cleaning. There are also many research options with statistical software and programming languages …

It is wonderful to see how GIZ is committed to mHealth and M&E through their investment in technology capacity building in Nepal. Check out how TechChange Communications Associate Samita Thapa met TechChange alumni at GIZ Nepal while returning to her native home during the holidays.

Tech for M&E begins with the humans behind the data. With the vast amounts of data provided with modern digital data collection tools, M&E practitioners need to understand how they can act as gatekeepers to ensure that we note the bias we are embedding in our data.

Last month, we launched our very first round of TC111: Technology for Monitoring & Evaluation with a class of over 100 participants. Bringing their online learning experience offline in Zambia, several course participants met with one of the course’s guest experts to continue their technology for M&E discussions in-person.

In case you didn’t make it to the 2014 D.C. M&E Tech conference, here are a few key takeaways from the event.

In the last decade, new technology has made advances in data storage and analysis to leverage the greater volume of data available. The digital universe made up of all the data we create and copy will only increase in the future. The International Data Corporation and EMC’s research says that the digital universe is doubling in size every two years and by 2020, will contain nearly as …

Surveys are the most common tools for carrying out these evaluations, but most of the time they result in stacks of papers that need to be keyed into a computer, introducing errors and wasting valuable time. In the Mobiles for International Development class, we saw a physical example of this where a pickup truck was loaded with stacks of questionnaires.