How to harness the data explosion to accelerate development

April 9, 2024

The so-called data revolution is a dream for science and public policy. This phenomenon also holds promise for designing solutions to problems in multiple areas of the 2030 Agenda by detecting and addressing pandemics, understanding and mitigating the effects of climate change, and predicting population dynamics.

This policy brief presents a synthesis of the main recommendations made by the UN Secretary-General in his report, Data for Development. It addresses the relationship between data and human rights. It refers to the importance of countries adopting institutional, regulatory, and governance frameworks that both stimulate the benefits of data and prevent the risks associated with its production and use.

Principales hallazgos

Data collection and analysis can shed light on disparities in access to basic services, unequal distribution of resources, and violation of fundamental rights. However, it is crucial to ensure that data collection is conducted ethically and with respect for privacy principles.

The UN indicates that data governance is the way forward. This term refers to the set of policies, processes, and regulations that govern the management, quality, integrity, access, and use of data in an organization or community.

A general governance scheme must consider the differences between countries, such as their level of wealth, the strength of their institutions, human capital and infrastructure capabilities, and the differences between different data sets.

Main Findings

Data collection and analysis can shed light on disparities in access to basic services, unequal distribution of resources, and violation of fundamental rights. However, it is crucial to ensure that data collection is conducted ethically and with respect for privacy principles.

The UN indicates that data governance is the way forward. This term refers to the set of policies, processes, and regulations that govern the management, quality, integrity, access, and use of data in an organization or community.

A general governance scheme must consider the differences between countries, such as their level of wealth, the strength of their institutions, human capital and infrastructure capabilities, and the differences between different data sets.

About the author

Ricardo Valencia

Economist from the Universidad Javeriana (Bogota, Colombia) and current senior data advisor at Cepei. He was deputy director general of the National Administrative Department of Statistics of Colombia (DANE) between September 2018 and August 2022.

Acerca del autor

Ricardo Valencia

Economist from the Universidad Javeriana (Bogota, Colombia) and current senior data advisor at Cepei. He was deputy director general of the National Administrative Department of Statistics of Colombia (DANE) between September 2018 and August 2022.

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