World Data Forum – Dubai Declaration

Supporting the implementation of the Cape Town Global Action Plan for Sustainable Development Data

At the end of the World Data Forum, the Dubai Declaration was presented at the 2ndWorld Data Forum to participants from national statistical offices (NSOs), other parts of national statistical systems (NSS), other data communities, government institutions, private sector, civil society organizations (CSOs), academia and media.

The Declaration stresses that there must be “quality, timely, relevant, open and disaggregated data for the ambition of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (2030 Agenda), to ensure that no one is left behind” and that NSS should be agile and responsive to meet the increased demands of data users, including for the 2030 Agenda.” 

The Cape Town Global Action Plan for Sustainable Data (CTGAP) guides “implementation of programmes and activities to respond to the data needs of the 2030 Agenda.” Meanwhile the Declaration stresses the need to support fundamental data collection programmes, such as the 2020 population and housing census round; the importance of coordination across the statistical system; and the data demands for the 2030 Agenda that require “urgent new, standards-based and interoperable solutions that leverage the power of new data sources and technologies” through partnerships between NSOs and the private sector, CSOs and academia and other research institutions. The 2030 Agenda explicitly calls for enhanced support for strengthening data collection and capacity-building in Member States and the capacity of NSOs and data systems “to ensure access to high-quality, timely, relevant and disaggregated data” and to “promote transparent and accountable scaling-up of appropriate public-private cooperation to exploit the contribution to be made by a wide range of data…”

At the same time the Declaration identifies “serious challenges” for many NSS, resulting in the lack of “accurate and timely data about people’s lives” with many remaining “invisible”. Also recognized is the importance of “ensuring and maximizing the effectiveness of financing for new and innovative forms of capacity development” as essential for implementing CTGAP and of “trust among producers and users of data and statistics… in full adherence with the UN Fundamental Principles of Official Statistics.”

Through the Dubai Declaration, participants resolved to ensure the availability and accessibility of quality, relevant, timely, open and disaggregated data “by income, sex, age, race, ethnicity, migration status, disability and geographic location and other characteristics relevant in national contexts.” They will also work collaboratively to “bring all data communities together to implement the CTGAP…” and will undertake key actions under the six CTGAP key areas, establishing partnerships.

They will “mobilize financing at domestic and international levels and ensure political commitment within each country for adequate allocation of domestic resources to strengthen data systems” with increased availability of sustainable development data… in closer working partnerships with stakeholders from academia, civil society…”

And, finally they called for the establishment of “an innovative funding mechanism, open to all stakeholders under UN membership oversight, that is able to respond in a fast and efficient manner to the priorities of national data and statistical systems, with a goal to mobilize both domestic and international funds and activate partnerships and funding opportunities to strengthen the capacity of national data and statistical systems,” to be created “under the mandate of the UN Statistical Commission.” 

Full Declaration.

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