Fact-checking as a method and tool for assessing public information

Jun 23, 2023

About the Event

At the beginning of 2022, the Partnership in Statistics for Development in the 21st Century  (PARIS21) and the Centro de Pensamiento Estratégico Internacional (Cepei) pioneered the creation of the first Community of Practice (CoP) on Data-Driven Communications in Latin America and the Caribbean. 

This initiative brings together the region’s national statistics offices (NSOs) and actors outside the statistical system to share knowledge and strengthen the capacity to transmit data relevant for decision-making.


Cristina Tardáguila

Former Deputy Director
International Fact-Checking Network

Olivia Sohr

Director of Impact and New Initiatives
Chequeado Argentina


Lucía oscuro

Ricardo Corredor Cure

Communications and advocacy consultant

“Disinformers cooperate at a systematic level and are very organized. They capitalize on the opportunity to share disinformation about any topic of little interest or with limited information. The most recent example was the news surrounding COVID-19,” stated Sohr. 

Tardáguila added that to prevent disinformation, NSOs “must work in simple language and always keep the user in mind, so that he or she can easily find information on the web. Be it a study or poverty and gender indicators, the user must be able to properly interpret the data so as not to fall into replicating false news,” adding that “disinformation goes hand in hand with news.” 

Main findings

In order to monitor progress and make evidence-based decisions regarding sustainable development, reliable, high-quality data on social, environmental, and economic issues are needed.

Additionally, when sharing large amounts of data, mechanisms and strategies are needed in order to strengthen transparency in communication processes and contend with disinformation or fake news. 

In this context, fact-checking has become increasingly important in journalism to combat any disinformation surrounding the 2030 Agenda. 

On June 13, the community of practice held its seventh communications talk focused on the main challenges, principles, and methodologies governing fact-checking, as well as recommendations that NSOs should take into account when combating misinformation. 

In this context, fact-checking has become increasingly important in NSOs’ communications strategies to ensure information quality and transparency. 

Session panelists included Cristina Tardáguila—Former Deputy Director of the International Fact-Checking Networkand Olivia Sohr, Director of Impact and New Initiatives at Chequeado Argentina. 

Regarding fact-checking as a method and tool for evaluating public information, they mentioned that the verification methodology cannot be arbitrary or overambitious. For example, security is a very broad term that cannot be checked because it does not mean the same thing to everyone.

The fact-checking methodology is made up of four principles: 

1. Evaluating the relevance of the content circulating on social media networks or websites (taking into account the publication’s scope and the topic’s relevance in the public debate).

2. Fact-checking the publication using data and analysis.

3.  Comparing sources to comply with the principle of transparency.

4.  Monitoring information rigorously; it must not be arbitrary.

Community of Practice on Data-Driven Communications in Latin America and the Caribbean

Cepei and PARIS21 identified that NSO communication experts did not have their own space for peer-to-peer exchange. The Cop provides a learning platform to strengthen communication skills and bring data closer to decision-makers. 


Currently, ten NSOs in the region are members of the Community: Argentina, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Dominican Republic, and Uruguay. Other countries are expected to join this initiative to strengthen the regional network and exchange common challenges regarding timely and effective data communication.


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