LAC-Africa Peer Exchange on Administrative Data

“The peer exchange allowed us to learn what other countries are doing in terms of administrative data and understand that we share many of the same challenges despite our different institutional types.”

Margarita Vaca, Fredy Rodríguez, GPSDD

April 23, 2020

This report prepared by Cepei and the Global Partnership outlines the key areas that formed the discussions over the two-and-a-half-day peer exchange, “Administrative data: LAC-Africa exchange”, held in Mexico, in 2019, and presents learnings and next steps to further the discussion on strengthening administrative data.

It is increasingly common for countries to compile statistics based on administrative sources or administrative data (routine data collected from services such as tax returns), especially to create or maintain base registers and to ensure that they complement other data sources to produce quality statistical outputs.

The advantages of administrative data sources range from reduced costs; the production of more timely data, given that data collection is often more frequent than other data sources, such as surveys.; up to greater efficiency because data is collected in a more seamless manner, reducing the potential response burden while improving the efficiency and quality of statistics.

Given that the member countries of Africa and Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) identified that they needed to strengthen their production and use capacities on administrative data, from November 5 to 7, 2019, the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data (Global Partnership) and the Centro de Pensamiento Estratégico Internacional (Cepei), joined efforts with the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI) of Mexico [Instituto Nacional de Estadística y Geografía (INEGI)] to carry out a peer exchange on administrative records in Mexico City. 

The event brought together 48 participants from national statistical offices, ministries, agencies, and government agencies; multilateral organizations; international organizations; and the private sector. Participants discussed issues related to data governance and sharing, strengthening data quality, and innovation and technology for data production.

Some Lessons Learned

Disseminate best practices: There are valuable initiatives, projects, and practices that can be used to strengthen administrative data that have not been efficiently disseminated among countries.

Nurture the emerging community of practice: There is a wide field of work with very interesting ideas to develop. This will help continue to improve the quality of administrative records and incorporate them into official statistics.

Support the development of regional public goods: Countries are willing to create regional public goods to improve the use of administrative records.