Updated on March 25, 2024


Created on May 23, 2017


U-report is a free SMS social monitoring tool and real-time information system for community participation

Developed By
Tested By
Content Partners


Product Description

U-report is a free SMS social monitoring tool and real-time information system for community participation, designed to strengthen community-led development, citizen engagement, and positive change.

SMS polls and alerts are sent out to U-reporters and real-time response information is collected. Results and ideas are shared back with the community. Issues polled include among others health, education, water, sanitation and hygiene, youth unemployment, HIV/AIDS, disease outbreaks; social welfare sectors. Data received can be disaggregated by age, gender, States, LGAs, Wards and settlements in real time. Registration is voluntary with SMS free to the users across all networks.

U-Report relies on volunteer community members serving as “U-Reporters” on a free entry, free exit basis to provide information on issues in their communities.

Target SDGs

SDG 10: Reduced Inequalities

SDG 6: Clean Water and Sanitation

Target Users (Target Impact Group)

Community, Public Sector Agencies, NGOs

Distributors / Implementing Organizations

UNICEF. U-report has been deployed in 35 countries since May 2017 and has more than 3 million active users. U-report is based on RapidSMS, a mobile polling open source software initially created by UNICEF's Innovation Unit in 2007.

Competitive Landscape

Direct competitors include FrontlineSMS and Magpi.

Manufacturing/Building Method

Code available here

Intellectural Property Type


User Provision Model

Direct download from a github code repository

Distributions to Date Status

U-report has been deployed in 35 countries since May 2017 and has more than 3 million active users.

Design Specifications

U-Report is based off of RapidSMS which polls to provide polling for large number of users. U-Report adds a visualization layer to aggregate poll results exposed in as JSON in the polling app. The user sends a text messages that is associated with his location, so the info is computed both regarding polling input and location.

Product Schematics

Technical Support

This product is an opensource software. The user who deploys it will be in charge of its support.

Replacement Components




Manufacturer Specified Performance Parameters


Vetted Performance Status




Complementary Technical Systems


Academic Research and References

  1. Muhammad Imran, Patrick Meier, Carlos Castillo, Andre Lesa, and Manuel Garcia Herranz. 2016. Enabling Digital Health by Automatic Classification of Short Messages. In Proceedings of the 6th International Conference on Digital Health Conference (DH ’16). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 61-65. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1145/2896338.2896364
  2. Otto, Kate; Shekar, Meera; Herbst, Christopher H.; Mohammed, Rianna. 2015. Information and Communication Technologies for Health Systems Strengthening : Opportunities, Criteria for Success, and Innovation for Africa and Beyond. Health, Nutrition, and Population Discussion Paper;. World Bank, Washington, DC. © World Bank. https://openknowledge.worldbank.org/handle/10986/21710 License: CC BY 3.0 IGO
  3. Schiano, A. Chebly, J. and Ruiz, F. Sustainable Development as a Path to Peacebuilding: Finding Common Ground to Counter the Extremist Narrative. 18 Whitehead J. Dipl. & Int’l Rel. 25 (2017)

Compliance with regulations


Evaluation methods


Other Information

U-report has been used in communities in the latest africa ebola outbreak for citizens to provide information about their local context and, in return, provides information back to them that they can use to work for change locally. The tool was used to increase awareness of local needs, one of the most important issues in the Ebola transmission.

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