NIDS-CRAM is the National Income Dynamics Study - Coronavirus Rapid Mobile Survey. The survey investigates the socioeconomic impacts of the national lockdown associated with the State of Disaster declared in South Africa in March 2020, and the social and economic consequences of the global Coronavirus pandemic.

NIDS-CRAM forms part of a broader study called the Coronavirus Rapid Mobile Survey (CRAM) which aims to inform policy using rapid reliable research on income, employment and welfare in South Africa, in the context of the global Coronavirus pandemic. The study is run by researchers from three universities: the Stellenbosch University, University of Cape Town (UCT) and the University of Witwatersrand (Wits). The NIDS-CRAM questionnaire incorporates inputs from members of working and reference groups which comprise researchers from multiple universities and government officials and analysts, among others. The NIDS-CRAM survey data collection and production operations are implemented by the Southern Africa Labour and Development Research Unit (SALDRU) based at UCT’s School of Economics.

NIDS-CRAM is a special follow up with a subsample of adults from households in the National Income Dynamics Study (NIDS) Wave 5 (2017). NIDS is a panel survey which has been run by SALDRU. It studies the well-being of South Africans, the households they live in and how these change over time. It started in 2008 when around 28 000 people across South Africa were interviewed. People were then re-interviewed, together with anyone they were living with at the time, every two to three years. Almost 40 000 people were interviewed in 2017.

Though NIDS-CRAM is a follow up with NIDS respondents, in comparison to the core NIDS panel study, NIDS-CRAM uses a much shorter questionnaire, with a focus on the Coronavirus pandemic and the national lockdown. The mode of the survey also changed from face-to-face to Computer Assisted Telephone Interviewing (CATI) surveys, repeated over several months. Five waves of NIDS-CRAM were conducted between May 2020 and May 2021.

NIDS-CRAM data support documentation such as information on how to access the data, a panel user manual, questionnaires, data manipulation and derived program files (Stata do files), technical papers are available on this site. However, for research outputs showing insights from the NIDS-CRAM data, please consult the broader CRAM study website.