Why sustainable development needs better data

Why sustainable development needs better dataSustainable development is in the spotlight in 2016, which marks the start of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, an initiative that is both aspirational and transformative.

The first priority for all national governments in planning for the 17 new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and their 169 associated targets, is to address the strengths and weaknesses of data sources, to swiftly determine how best to address the gaps, as well as the complexities of measurement. Rapid development of the capacities of national statistical institutions will be critical because, 15 years from now, by the end of the 2030 Agenda, there will be nearly half a billion more people living in the Asia-Pacific region, all of whom should have reliable access to energy, food, water, education and employment.

Data are the lifeblood of decision-making. Without them, designing, monitoring and evaluating policies for sustainable development is almost impossible. The breadth and depth of the new development agenda entails complex decisions about the future of our planet, our communities and our economies. Without appropriate data and information, there is a risk that our sustainable development strategies will be only partially complete, with their contours dictated by what is and is not available. This will not only slow down the process of implementing the SDGs, but also limit their transformational potential.

Generally, official statistics offer insights about Asia-Pacific development, but these are inadequate for the far-reaching and integrated dimensions of the sustainable development agenda. The World Bank’s Statistical Capacity Indicator for the Asia-Pacific region offers good foundations on which to build. On a scale from zero (representing no capacity) to 100 (full capacity), a rating of 79 is assigned for the timeliness of statistics, 70 for the adequacy of source data and 62 for methodologies used. There are, however, individual country scores as low as 20.

Available at: http://www.policyforum.net/why-sustainable-development-needs-better-data/ 

About The Project

Supported by the Department for International Development (DFID) UK, this 3 year project focuses on deepening the understanding of the international politics of development diplomacy, including the key political drivers that influence and shape development policy internationally and the impact this has on South Africa as an emerging development assistance partner.

Key Themes

This project considers three key areas:

  1. The development of the South African Development Partnership Agency (SADPA);
  2. Trilateral development partnerships; and
  3. Multilateral development cooperation.
Aims and Objectives of The Project

The aims of this project include:

  • improving the understanding of the current transition taking place within multilateral development cooperation in both the geo-political North and South;
  • understanding the role of multilateral development cooperation for South Africa’s foreign policy and international engagement in the short, medium, and long-term;
  • review potential opportunities as well as obstacles in engaging in international development assistance
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Contact details
Address:   3rd Floor Robert Sobukwe Building
263 Nana Sita Street
Pretoria
South Africa

PO Box 14349
The Tramshed
0126
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      Telephone:   +2712 337 6082
      Fax:   +2786 212 9442
 
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