Data Innovation Project

What exactly is data innovation? It is the use of new or non-traditional data sources and methods to gain a more nuanced understanding of development challenges. It can help communities to become more empowered, policymakers to be more informed and ultimately everyone to achieve the goals of sustainable development.

With these thoughts in mind, UNDP together with its national partners is diving into the area of SDG Tier III indicators – those for which no methodology exists yet. This gap in official data prevents designing evidence-based policies, especially in high priority areas of  developing countries. Here we present you our Data Innovation Project:

Measuring the Unmeasured//Venturing Into the Unknown: How Can We Measure SDG Tier III Indicators?

This project aims to support national partners efforts to measure progress of their sustainable development agenda using alternative sources of data and technologies. We will focus on

i) testing different methodologies for measuring Tier III indicators of high SDGs priorities in the countries in Arab States, Europe & Central Asia, and Asia Pacific and feeding this information into policy responses,

ii) providing input into global discussions on SDG measurement, and

iii) developing guidance for other Country Offices interested in exploring alternative measurement methodologies.

At the moment, reliable and timely measurement of SDGs is inhibited by structural constraints on institutions, low quality data, limited technical capacities, and insufficient financial resources; while experimentation with big and new data is also lagging behind. Therefore, successful measurement will contribute towards a culture of evidence-based decision-making, informed policies and programmes, and strengthened state-society relations in a growing number of countries in the three regions.

We launch the project with the kick-off meeting to be held on 16 – 17 October in Istanbul, where the teams will gather for the first time to exchange ideas on their research questions and methodology design; get feedback from leading international experts in the fields of triangulating various data sources, design thinking with data, and innovation in public policy. As a result, each team will leave with an Action plan to be implemented step by step. Stay tuned for our updates!