Mandate.Data requirements for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, with its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), 169 targets and over 230 global indicators, present an unprecedented challenge for both national statistical systems and the international statistical community. In the UN General Assembly Resolution 70/1, Member States stressed that follow-up and review processes at all levels would be based on high-quality, accessible, timely, reliable data, disaggregated by income, sex, age, race, ethnicity, migration status, disability and geographic location and other characteristics. Also, both GA resolution 70/1 and Statistical Commission decision 47/101(l) stress that the compilation of the global SDG indicators is to be based on data produced by national statistical systems.
Definition.A National Reporting Platform (NRP) can be understood as a means to report and disseminate national statistics including SDG indicators, and refers to a web site, database, and associated IT infrastructure used to collect, store, secure, and ultimately disseminate data and related metadata and documentation in an easily accessible way to reach all target users. Target users may encompass government officials and policy makers, members of academia, non-governmental organizations and non-profits, international organizations, media and other information providers, business community, as well as individual users.1
Purpose of the event
Discussions in several fora - from regional workshops to international seminars on SDGs - have underlined the great urgency to establish national data portals/platforms for the reporting of the SDG indicators in both developing and developed countries. The urgency to discuss this issue derives from the fact that in many developing countries existing data reporting platforms are either not fully functional or not fully suitable for the reporting of SDG indicators or have only a limited functionality. Moreover, so far, no arrangements and products have emerged that would establish common sustainable solutions for a large number of countries, as it was the case with DevInfo, which was used in about 120 countries during the MDGs. A study on national data portals published in 2016 by PARIS21 concluded that while there have been many well-intentioned efforts to make these portals available to countries, the outcomes are rather mixed particularly in the most aid-dependent countries. The frequent establishment of multiple parallel platforms has often resulted in (i) a duplication of workload for already resource-constrained NSOs, which have to maintain several portals and update information manually, (ii) confusion for users, who consult the various portals with often conflicting results, and (iii) overall high costs for demonstrably low usage of these portals.
Objective.The objective of this meeting is to review best practices and to discuss and showcase possible solutions and to identify ways forward for their implementation. In addition, the meeting will produce recommendations and guidelines for basic requisites of national data platforms suitable to SDG follow-up and reporting.
Participants.The event will bring together representatives from national statistical offices, international and regional organizations with programmes or initiatives that support data platforms in countries, as well as donors and other providers of data platform solutions. Representatives of statistical offices will be both from countries where solutions are already implemented and can be shared with others, and from countries where no SDG data reporting platform has been established yet. A total of 40-60 participants are expected, including SDG focal points and data managers.
See DESCRIPTION OF NATIONAL REPORTING PLATFORMS, prepared by the Task Force on Reporting SDG Indicators Using National Reporting Platforms, Draft of 26 May 2017. To conform with the Fundamental Principles for Official Statistics, a NRP would ideally have the following minimal characteristics: (a) be managed by national statistical offices; (b) feature official statistics calculated according to established accurate and reliable methodology; (c) be publicly accessible; (d) provide national and global metadata in a transparent manner; and (e) allow for feedback from data users (ebid.).