To see the sorts of information you can add to improve your data, and how your data compares with other organisations, go to the IATI Dashboard. This contains a summary of every publisher's data, as well as a summary table comparing data of all IATI publishers.
How the IATI Dashboard works
The IATI Dashboard is a tool managed by the IATI technical team. Every 3 days it collects published data via the IATI Registry and analyses it. This data is then presented in charts and metrics which data users can access. Users can look at the data on an individual publisher level, or at all the IATI publishers as a whole.
There are 4 key sections in the IATI Dashboard:
- Headlines – this tells you about the total number of IATI publishers, files and activities published since 2014
- Data Quality – this highlights technical errors present in organisations’ publishing. Note we don’t attempt to evaluate the actual content of the data
- Exploring Data – this explains which elements and codes publishers are using in their data
- Publishing Statistics – these tables compare how organisations are meeting the Key qualities of IATI data in their publishing.
The methodology used to create the publishing statistics is explained on each page and is periodically reviewed and updated. The aim is that the statistics can be used as a credible benchmark, and to guide organisations in how to improve the quality of their IATI data. If you have questions about how the methodologies work, please contact the IATI technical team.
Check for errors on your individual publisher page
As a publisher you can use your individual Publisher page on the IATI Dashboard to check for validation errors. To find your page, go to the Dashboard’s homepage and select your organisation.
First look at the Headlines box, checking:
- that your Reporting Org on the Registry and in your Data match
- If these don’t match there’s a risk your data won’t be imported into visualisation tools as it’s invalid. You’ll need to update your Reporting org in your IATI files. Please follow steps 3 and 4 under the ‘Changing your organisation’s IATI Org ID’ section on How to update your organisation details.
- that you have at least one activity file and only one organisation file
- that your number of activities and unique activities match
- In IATI every activity needs a unique identifier, see What data should I publish? for instructions. If multiple activities have the same identifier they won’t be correctly pulled through into visualisation tools. Check your data to find out which identifiers are duplicated.
- that you only have one organisation
- Unless you are publishing on behalf of another organisation, only report Organisation information for your own organisation in your organisation file. If you’ve added the details of any other company, remove these.
- that you’re only using valid Versions
- The IATI Standard is updated in stages, each stage has a corresponding version number. Valid versions are: 1.01, 1.02 1.03, 1.04, 1.05 and 2.01, 2.02 and 2.03. If any other version number is shown, please correct this in your files.
- if you’re using hierarchies, these are sequential e.g. 1, 2, 3
- Hierarchies allow you to demonstrate your internal decision-making and flow of funds in your organisation. You should start with activities at level 1, and then progress to levels 2, 3 and so on.
- that you have a license showing
- IATI data must be published under an open data license. You specify your type of license on the IATI Registry. Please see How to license your data.
- that you have zero files failing validation
- To check which of your files are failing validation go to the ‘Data Quality’ section on your Dashboard page. Each invalid file is listed with a link to the ‘IATI public validator’. Select ‘test validation’ to get details of the errors in your file. Clicking ‘Extra info’ will provide additional information about the errors, including on which line they occur. Please note that the IATI public validator only checks the structure of your files and doesn’t give information on content errors.
Improving your data quality – Publishing Statistics
Every organisation publishing IATI data appears in the Publishing Statistics tables. These give an overview of what data different organisations are publishing and how timely and comprehensive the information is. Most tables only look at live activities, so historic information is not included.
Above each table is an explanation of what’s included. Below each is more detail on the methodology for each calculation.
In IATI you should be publishing:
- Timely data
- Frequency: Update your data at least quarterly. The Dashboard checks to see when you added a more recent transaction date. This counts as an ‘update’. If you’ve updated your data, the update will show in the relevant month. Please note if you’ve included future transaction dates at any point this will skew the figures. Transaction dates should never be in the future.
- Time lag: You can also check how up-to-date your data is relative to the first time you published it. You should aim to reduce the time lag in your publication.
- Forward-looking data
- Here you can see how many of your activities contain forward-looking budgets. Ideally 100% of your activities should have a budget for each year the activity is set to take place.
- The table shows activities taking place, now and over the next two years, and the number of activities with budget for that year. Your data quality will improve as you add in more forward-looking budgets.
- Comprehensive data
- These tables analyse which ‘elements’ you’re publishing for each activity, and therefore detail the work you’re doing.
- The summary table gives an overview of your data.
- Core covers the basic activity data, largely those covered in Key activity information to publish. When looking at your data quality you first want to get your ‘core’ score as near to 100 as possible. This means for 100% of your activities you are reporting the ‘core’ elements.
- Financials covers your transactions and how well your data can be traced down and up to other organisations.
- Value added contains additional elements particularly useful to data users, such as sectors, location and results.
- If under comprehensiveness, you notice a number in brackets e.g. 90 (100), the first number is the percentage of your activities that have the element reported correctly. The number in brackets shows those with the element reported but there is an error in some of them. You can use the methodology at the end of the table to try and work out what is going wrong in your data.
- The coverage page seeks to compare the amount of funding each organisation receives with the amount they report in their IATI files. This analysis holds coverage data only for 2014 and 2015 so far.
- In future, we anticipate using the total spend outlined in publishers’ organisation files, rather than collecting the information manually from publishers.
- Summary Statistics
- This section provides an overview and compares all IATI publishers by scoring the three dimensions – Timeliness, Forward-looking and Comprehensiveness and adjusting this score by the proportion of a publisher’s activities covered in their IATI data (‘coverage’).
In the Publishing Statistics section, there’s also a table on humanitarian data published to IATI.
Dashboard Data Quality checklist
This guide introduces you to the IATI Dashboard and how you can check if your files are valid, if your data is structured correctly and what further data you can add.
First, ensure your files are valid.
Second, go through the headlines on your individual publisher page on the IATI Dashboard to ensure your data is structured properly.
Third, look at the Core page on the Dashboard’s Summary Statistics and work on getting all of your elements up to 100%.
Then choose an area of your data to work on. This includes increasing the frequency and decreasing the timlag of your publishing, adding in forward-looking budgets, and increasing the number of elements you publish under the Financials and Value added pages on the IATI Dashboard.
If you have any questions about the Dashboard and how to improve your data quality, please get in touch with the IATI technical team.
IATI data is in a machine-readable format which means it can easily be visualised through various digital tools.
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