The Nanoro Health and Demographic Surveillance System (HDSS), located in the rural centre of Burkina Faso, was established in 2009 by the Clinical Research Unit of Nanoro with the aim of providing a core framework for clinical trials and also to support the Burkina Faso health authorities in generating epidemiological data that can contribute to the setup and assessment of health interventions. In the baseline of initial census, 54 781 individuals were recorded of whom 56.1% are female. After the initial census, vital events such as pregnancies, births, migrations and deaths have been monitored, and data on individuals and household characteristics are updated during regular 4-monthly household visits. The available data are categorized into demographic, cultural, socio-economic and health information, and are used for monitoring and evaluation of population development issues. As a young site, our objective has been to strengthen our skills and knowledge and share new scientific experiences with INDEPTH and HDSS sites in Burkina Faso. In addition, all data produced by the Nanoro HDSS will be made publicly available through the INDEPTH data sharing system.