Frequently asked questions

Mapping a path to sustainable development for everyone

To build spatial data solutions that make development goals achievable

GRID3 (pronounced GRID ‘three’) stands for Geo-Referenced Infrastructure Demographic Data for Development. The “3” refers to the three Ds in Demographic Data for Development. To leave no one behind, you must leave no one off the map. A lack of population data can render communities invisible and prevent them from receiving fundamental services and support.

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A hybrid method is a method that combines existing population and housing census data with gridded population estimates, to produce population counts for the entire country. For more information, please visit our census page here.

Planners need census information for all kinds of development work, including: assessing demographic trends; analysing socio-economic conditions; designing evidence-based poverty-reduction strategies; monitoring and evaluating the effectiveness of policies; and tracking progress toward national and internationally agreed development goals.

Census information also helps raise awareness about population issues among government decision-makers and the public at large. Additionally, a national census is often the only source of information for identifying forms of social, demographic or economic exclusion – such as inequalities by racial, ethnic, religious or other characteristics. The census also provides data on disadvantaged regions and vulnerable groups, such as the poor, the young, the old, people living with disabilities, and women and girls.

Censuses can empower local communities by giving them access to this critical data. And it can encourage participation in local decision-making by increasing knowledge of communities’ needs and by ensuring representation based on accurate numbers.

Census data is typically aggregated and released at various administrative levels. The boundaries of administrative units, however, are sometimes not conducive to planning. By converting census data into 100x100m grid cells, it can be calculated and analysed over the exact area needed and enhance the usability of census data. For more information about the method used to convert census data into grid cells, please read our top-down modelling approach here.