15. Earlier SFD Reports are labelled desk-based or field-based studies. What does that mean?

The terms desk-based and field-based were in use as reports were prepared in Phase 1 of this project, following the methodology recommended in the initial SFD Manual (Version 1.0, October 2015). The terms do not indicate where the study was carried out, but rather related to the level of data collection and analysis required. 

  • A desk-based study is essentially an initial study based on available secondary data sources.
  • A field-based study uses primary and secondary data sources to complete and more comprehensive report, which has a greater depth of detail and analysis.

When you look at SFD Graphics and SFD Reports from the SFD library, for these earlier reports the SFD Level will show as “Level not set”. The basis on which they were developed has been updated and the terms desk-based and field-based have been replaced by three Levels of SFD Report.

If you want to make adjustments to an existing SFD Graphic and Report – or make your own SFD Report and SFD Graphic, then the Level at which you create the new SFD Graphic and SFD Report will be determined by the new definitions. These are given in the FAQ #16 “What are the different Levels of SFD Report?”