How to define an EMIS?

In the first session this morning, I introduced a definition for an EMIS, the one we use at UNESCO’s international Insitute for Educational Planning. I paste it down for reference, and I would love to hear your thoughts on it! How do you define an EMIS in your context?

An EMIS is the coordinated network of individuals, organizations, institutions, technologies, processes and procedures, rules, and regulations, that produce the fit-for-purpose quality data needed for informing decision-making processes in operating an educational system.

The elements included in an EMIS focus on the needs of educational planners and managers, regardless of the educational sub-sector, programme orientations, system, or entity in which they work, at all administrative levels, to perform their responsibilities.

An EMIS materializes into interoperable datasets, for which there are distinct functionalities (or modules, or apps) for data collection, processing, management, storage, archiving, and extraction for analysis (including sometimes simulations and projections models) and dissemination to different types of audiences, including local and international stakeholders.

Typically, an EMIS has components referring to students, schools, human resources (teaching and non-teaching staff), infrastructure and material, and financial resources.

The information managed by the EMIS can be quantitative or qualitative, and combine various sources of input.

Accountable entities designated under well-defined institutional leadership are responsible to create, maintain, and update the EMIS by guaranteeing both the financial sustainability of the system and the continuous professional development of involved actors.

Good governance also implies leadership in sharing the strategic direction of the EMIS, as well as assessing the relevance of the data system, and ensuring data ethics.

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