Q: Where can I see if a particular country of interest has CODs?

A: Inspect the COD Portal or the HDX COD Dashboard.

Q: What are COD geoservices?

A: Many COD-ABs have live geoservices and they are being added gradually to all remaining COD-ABs. These services allow GIS systems to directly consume the most up-to-date COD-AB version into a map or automated system. Once the map with the geoservices is saved, it will load the newest boundaries when re-opened. For more information see COD Tutorial: How to consume COD live services.

Q: How is the Humanitarian Profile COD (COD-HP) used?

A: COD-HPs are integral to Snapshots, Dashboards, Humanitarian Needs Overviews, Strategic Response Plans, SitReps, and all sorts of data analyses.

Q: What is a P-code?

A: A P-code is an alphanumeric place code that uniquely identifies a geographic place including a COD feature independently of feature name variations, language, or spelling. See P-codes and gazetteers.

Q: What is a COD feature?

A: A COD feature is a boundary polygon or location point referenced by a COD. COD-AB and COD-PS datasets normally reference administrative features. The generic term is used to avoid association with administrative level terminology (such as ‘province’ or ‘district’) which varies from country to country and even within a country.

Q: What is the difference between an HDX dataset and a COD?

A: All CODs are disseminated as HDX datasets, but many HDX datasets are not CODs. CODs are tagged as a ‘COMMON OPERATIONAL DATASET - COD’ and can be filtered within HDX.

Q: What is the difference between an HDX dataset and a resource?

A: HDX datasets are collections of one or more resources and have one URL. Resources are individual files (although they may be zip files containing multiple files) or links to live geoservices, APIs, or other web-based services.

Q: What file formats are COD-AB datasets provided in?

A: COD-AB datasets generally include:

  • shapefiles

  • geodatabases

  • EMF files

  • live geoservices

  • spreadsheets (XLSX) (for the gazetteer)

GeoJSON files may also be included. Vector tiles in dynamic or downloadable (.mbtiles) format may be available (see list). For more information on vector tiles see documentation here.

Q: What file formats are COD-PS datasets provided in?

A: COD- PS datasets generally include:

  • XLSX spreadsheets for the gazetteer

  • XLSX spreadsheets containing separate worksheets for each administrative level

  • individual CSV spreadsheets for each population statistics administrative level

Q: Where can I obtain CODs?

A: CODs are disseminated on the Humanitarian Data Exchange (HDX). HDX has a COD page, and CODs are a filtering option on every location page.

Q: Is there a COD-PS for every COD-AB?

A: No, but most COD-AB countries have a COD-PS.

Q: What are the proper field names for COD files?

A: FIS encourages the use of:

  • “ADMn” for administrative level terminology, where 'n' is the level number

  • “ADMn-XX for feature name fields, where 'n' is the level number and XX is the two-character language code

  • “ADMn-CODE” for P-code fields, where 'n' is the level number

However, any unique and unambiguous names are acceptable.

Q: Who can provide population statistics datasets? 

A: UNFPA RO is your key focal point on population statistics datasets. (Please contact FIS for further information.)

Q: Who can help with providing answers to specific questions about the dataset? 

A: Each COD-PS should be accompanied by a USER-GUIDANCE NOTE disclosing key information on the dataset. If the user-guidance note is unavailable, please reach out to the UNFPA Regional Office in your region. Alternatively, you may reach out to UNFPA HQ Technical Division for coordination support with UNFPA's regional offices.

Q: Who can help maintain the dataset over time? 

A: UNFPA will lead the maintenance of the dataset over time through yearly revisions.

Q: Can I link my application to the CODs?

A: Yes. The Humanitarian Data Exchange (HDX) is the source for CODs and this platform has an API. A more COD-specific API that provides detailed information, such as P-Code and names lists in gazetteers, administrative levels, metadata, and a version scheme is available. This API is largely synchronised with COD production documented in the COD Portal.

Q: Can I retrieve COD data/information based on a specific set of geographic coordinates or P-Code?

A: Yes. To access a listing of COD P-Codes and names for a given input like coordinates and/or iso-2 code try the COD Services lookup resource.

For help on the COD Services API and to leave feedback, visit here.