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News and Events

News and Events



The AODN monthly resource list puts together content including a reading list, avenues for capacity building, and events from different stakeholders across the globe on the use of data and open data and for better service delivery in sectors such as Agriculture, Gender, Education, and Health. 

  • What AODN is reading this Month 

How Civil Society Can Use Data Well

Nonprofits need to think critically about the data they work with every step of the way. Does crucial information even exist to begin with? How was the data collected in the first place? Who is it shared with and how? 

The following prompts are meant to provide some guidance on what questions might be worth considering at the onset of every data-driven project, as well as practical advice on how to move beyond reflections.Read more.

Here’s How To Break Into Data Journalism — A Journalist’s Perspective

Both “data” and “journalism” are complicated terms. But we now live in a digital world in which nearly everything and almost anything can be and is described with numbers. From the orders you make online, the signups, the viewership on your favorite news channel, the stories you tell and the movies you watch as well as the terms and conditions that you accept, the passwords you set up, the books you sign in as you enter a building, the medical records you give, the personal information you share; it is all data. Read more.

Five Ways Data is Bolstering African Countries’ Resilience to the Pandemic and Other Global Shocks

Last April, the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data joined forces with the UN Economic Commission for Africa, to make sure that governments had the data they needed to fight the pandemic.The Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data  is currently engaged in 35 countries across Africa and have built a roster of 30 data suppliers including universities, civil society orgs, and businesses, supporting over 40 partnerships ensuring that timely data facilitates swift decision-making. Read more

Putting Data and Innovation to Work for the SDGs: the Data Innovation Fund

To help enable more low- and middle-income countries benefit from new tools and approaches to produce, manage, and use data, the World Bank’s Development Data Group established the Data Innovation Fund (DIF) in 2016, with support from the Trust Fund for Statistical Capacity Building and in collaboration with the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data.

The DIF issued three international calls for innovative proposals in 2016, 2017, and 2018. Read more.

Gender Financing in Kenya: Mapping funding to improve gender equality

This report assesses the availability and quality of publicly available information, including government
budgets and open data portals, collects primary data on data use, and tracks the available gender
financing to determine how the Government of Kenya and international funders can better meet
gender advocates’ needs. Read more.

Data Equity: Six steps beyond data disaggregation

When the pursuit of equity touches on data—for women or other groups facing structural barriers to opportunity—there is usually a big focus on disaggregation. Disaggregation means breaking down information into smaller sub-populations, for example by age or gender. This is a natural instinct since we need to see people more clearly in the data to understand their conditions and address their needs.

In this article Sarah Lucas shares six aspects of data equity beyond disaggregation that apply to gender equity, to racial equity, and to any effort to see and support a community that struggles for justice.Read more.

In Poor Countries, Statistics Are Both Undersupplied And Underused

According to the World Bank’s latest World Development Report, entitled “Data for Better Lives”, about 1bn people have no official proof of their identity. More than a quarter of the world’s children under five are not registered at birth. Half of the 29 poorest countries have not completed a census in the past ten years—Congo has not done one since 1984—and only 40% have three or more estimates of poverty that can be compared across time. Read more.

Towards A Framework For Governing Data Innovation: Fostering Trust In The Use Of Non-Traditional Data Sources In Statistical Production

With the rise of new technologies, the use of non-traditional data sources in recent years has increased exponentially. This research paper seeks to cultivate a better understanding of the governance factors that improve trust and confidence in the use of non-traditional data sources for official statistical production, with a focus on legal arrangements, quality assurance practices, and policy changes. Read more. 

Stronger Data Systems Needed to Fight Poverty

The World Bank is calling for strengthened national data systems in order to realize the full potential of the data revolution to transform the lives of poor people. Read more.

How COVID-19 is changing the world: a statistical perspective Volume III

More than ever, the world needs reliable and trustworthy data and statistics to inform these important decisions. The United Nations and all member organizations of the Committee for the Coordination of Statistical Activities (CCSA) collect and make available a wealth of information for assessing the multifaceted impacts of the pandemic. This report updates some of the global and regional trends presented in the first and second volumes and offers a snapshot of how COVID-19 continues to affect the world today across multiple domains. The report also highlights the impact of the pandemic on specific regions and population groups.Read more

Navigating The Independence And Relevance Of National Statistical Offices

Today, the majority of central banks across all income groups are independent and the notion that central banks ought to have some degree of independence is fairly uncontroversial. Without independence, governments might misuse their power over the money supply, cause disturbing rates of inflation, and damage long-run development outcomes.

A very similar argument can be made with respect to the independence of national statistical offices (NSOs). Whereas central banks control a country’s money supply, NSOs have traditionally controlled a large part of a country’s data supply. Read more 

How to Harness Data’s Value in a Rapidly Changing Landscape: Reflections on the 2021 World Development Report

Clearly, over the World Development Report’s 360+ pages, there is much to unpack. And as I [Grant Cameron] read it, I asked myself two questions: First, does the WDR make a significant intellectual contribution regarding data’s role in development? Second, do the report’s recommendations practically translate into how the Bank provides financial and technical support to countries or into implementation advice for development institutions and practitioners? Let’s take these questions in turn.Read more

  • Training /Tools

Open Data Policy Lab Releases Third Wave of Open Data Toolkit

 The Third Wave of Open Data Toolkit, provides organizations with specific operational guidance on how to foster responsible, effective, and purpose-driven re-use. The toolkit—authored by Andrew Young, Andrew J. Zahuranec, Stefaan G. Verhulst, and Kateryna Gazaryan—supports the work of data stewards, responsible data leaders at public, private, and civil society organizations empowered to seek new ways to create public value through cross-sector data collaboration. The toolkit provides this support a few different ways.

The Statistical Performance Indicators: A new tool to measure the performance of national statistical systems

To assess the performance of National Statistical Systems and identify areas for improvement, the World Bank has developed the Statistical Performance Indicators (SPI), with the aim to help national statistical systems learn from one another and to facilitate the urgent need for transformation.

Gender Data Kit 

Gender Data Kit is a set of gender-responsive technologies, methods and resources for gender data projects.

  • Events 

GO Open Data 2021 May 6-8, 2021

The 2021 GO Open Data conference will be held virtually for the first time. Go Open Data is an annual conference that is attended by all sectors interested in learning about and promoting the creation and use of open data and sharing knowledge in the open community.

This year’s theme impacts all of us – Open for Community Well-being. 

EU DATAVIZ’21  November 23-24, 2021

EU DataViz will bring together the open data and data visualisation community, including policymakers, researchers, academia, private entities, students and citizens interested in the power of open data as a factor determining our future.

The conference is open to the general public and may be especially attractive to professionals working in public administration. Registrations for participants will open in July

DataFest Kampala April 29- 30, 2021

DataFest Kampala brings together data enthusiasts and data experts to share knowledge on data usage and network, share or acquire some new skills. 

Event Report: The Role of Women In Opening Data

Watch: Exploring Ways to Make Gender Data Accessible and Actionable: Introducing Equalityathome.org 



Our March 2021 resource list comes at a special time when the world’s celebrating Open Data Day and International Women’s Day concurrently and at a time when the pandemic has made the poorest and most vulnerable people, mostly women and girls, invisible in data, exacerbating their marginalization further despite the fact that more data is being collected and produced than ever before. 

Therefore, as we celebrate the gains made, we continue to rally for prioritization of the publication and use of open gender data across Sub-Saharan Africa.  

Reading List

Using a Violence Against Children Survey to Drive Change: A Case Study of Tanzania

In 2008, the government of Tanzania, UN agencies, the United States government, and civil society worked together to design and implement a Violence Against Children Survey (VACS) in Tanzania. 

They were seeking to catalyze action and change on violence against children and increase awareness of the problem. The data on violence against boys and girls and the VACS’ multisectoral methodology and government-led coordination process catalyzed and shaped long-term, multi-sectoral change. This case study recounts the story of how the data came to be collected and the factors that led to its uptake and impact. Read more.

COVID-19 and beyond: How the Africa Gender Data Network can help boost capacity for gender data collection, use, and impact

Africa’s National Statistics Offices (NSOs), the official producers of statistics, have not been spared from the effects of the pandemic— making it even more challenging to answer demands for more and better sex-disaggregated data. To support Africa’s NSOs in 15 countries, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) has been working closely with Data2X and Open Data Watch over the last year and a half to launch the Africa Gender Data Network (AGDN). The main goal of the Network is to:raise the standard of gender data production to better link with the demand for that data; improve the effectiveness of communication of and about gender data and; encourage gender data use across participating countries. 

To better understand the impact of the pandemic on the statistical activities of AGDN countries, ECA conducted a short survey followed by interviews in late 2020. Overall, the survey found that all 15 countries and their statistical operations have been affected by the pandemic — whether moderately or severely. Read more

Strengthening Gender Measures and Data in the COVID-19 era: An Urgent Need for Change

The ILO has joined with partners in the production and use of gender statistics to issue a call to action to improve gender data, building on lessons learned and gaps exposed or exacerbated during the COVID-19 pandemic.

This brief highlights 5 key areas where strong and decisive action is required to achieve sustainable improvement in the availability of key gender data, including in the world of work.Read more.

Bringing Open Data to Bear on Gender Inequality in Africa

As stakeholders across Africa continue to push for implementation of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa, interventions to accelerate progress on SDGs and national gender equality priorities, we asked ourselves what evidence informs different initiatives. Is the evidence needed to inform gender equality work in the public sector and by non-state actors available, appropriately disaggregated, and open?

This is what we set out to explore through the Gendered Open Data Study exploring the availability of sex disaggregated data for SDGs 1-5 across 19 Anglophone African countries. As we celebrate this year’s International Day of the Girl Week, we draw stakeholders’ attention to the gender data gaps across Sub-Saharan Africa and what can be done to address them. Read more and explore country status dashboards here.

COVID-19, Gender, and a More Equitable Response for Sub-Saharan Africa

We are learning more every day and obtaining more data on how COVID-19 affects all people, vulnerable communities, and especially women. But we must keep in mind that the data are incomplete and often not disaggregated by sex or other socio-economic factors. This, in and of itself, demonstrates how many communities and policymakers do not understand the disproportionate impact this pandemic is having on women. Read more 

Why the World Needs More Women Data Scientists

Relying on biased information undermines the effectiveness of evidence-based policymaking. A potential source of bias in many datasets is that most of the world’s data scientists i.e., the people who collect, organize, analyze data, and make decisions, are men. 

Women hold just 18 percent of data science jobs in the United States, and the problem is worse in most lower-income countries, where women are less likely to have access to the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education that provides a gateway to a career in data science. In addition to increasing the risk of bias, gender imbalances in STEM and data science training make it harder for women to succeed in high-paying professions linked to the digital economy, further widening gender pay gaps.

Fortunately, several initiatives are putting data into the hands of women and girls, equipping them with the skills necessary to move up the skills pyramid and participate in the digital economy.

The COVID-19 Gender Mortality Gap — is Civil Registration the Answer?

Given the strong likelihood that inequalities in registration could be impacting COVID-19 mortality data, we can expect limited registration of female deaths that are directly and indirectly attributed to the virus. This, in turn, further exacerbates the trend of under-registration of female deaths and the existing bias towards men, both in terms of the numbers of confirmed deaths and excess mortality recorded. Read more

Bridging the Gender Gap in Zanzibar this African Statistics Day

The lack of gender statistics remains one of the most pervasive gaps in official statistics and data across the world. Our understanding of women and girls’ lives – and the constraints they face – is limited because we lack high-quality gender data. That is why Zanzibar’s Office of the Chief Government Statistician (OCGS) has focused our Inclusive Data Charter Action Plan on enhancing the production, availability, and use of gender statistics. Read more. 

Gender Dimensions of Disaster Risk and Resilience

Men and women, boys and girls have different experiences of disasters. Gender dynamics impact both the way they are affected by disasters and their capacity to withstand and recover from them. Gender inequalities can result in gender-differentiated disaster impact, and differentiated impacts can influence gender dynamics, which in turn affect future resilience to shocks. Disaster risk management policies are designed to maximize results, taking local conditions – including gender dynamics – as fixed. 

When women and men are affected differently by disasters, practitioners and policy makers have a responsibility to use the tools available for mitigating disaster impacts to close gender gaps in outcome. An improved understanding of the gender dynamics of disaster risk and resilience also allows for better policy and program design, which benefits all stakeholders. Read more

Making Open Development Inclusive: Lessons from IDRC Research

This resource, drawing on ten years of empirical work and research, analyzes how open development has played out in practice. Focusing on development practices in the Global South, the contributors assess the crucial questions of who is able to participate and benefit from open practices, and who cannot. Examining a wide range of cases, they offer a macro analysis of how open development ecosystems are governed, and evaluate the inclusiveness of a variety of applications, including creating open educational resources, collaborating in science and knowledge production, and crowdsourcing information.Read more.

Situating Open Data: Global Trends in Local Contexts

Situating Open Data provides several empirical accounts of open data practices, the local implementation of global initiatives, and the development of new open data ecosystems. Drawing on case studies in different countries and contexts, the chapters demonstrate the practices and actors involved in open government data initiatives unfolding within different socio-political settings. Read more

Gender and COVID-19 Group on Mendeley 

The gender and COVID-19 Group on Mendeley includes over 500 resources related to gender and COVID-19. This group allows you to locate and find resources relatively easy, as well as include direct citations and references. You can also add your references directly to the group.


Apolitical: How to Use Data to ‘Build Back Better’ Post-Covid-19

This workshop with SDSN TReNDS  provides you with insights on how to best use data to inform your organisation’s recovery efforts and implement effective strategies. The workshop will also highlight practical approaches and guidance from practitioners who are dealing directly with the crisis ‘on-the-ground’ and share lessons learned.

Watch: Open Gender Data for Tanzania – What is Missing? Why Does it Matter?

This webinar  explores the Open Gender Data landscape in Tanzania, and its implications.

Watch: World Data Forum – Making the Invisible, Visible Through New Approaches to Inclusive Data

This World Data Forum 2020 session, hosted by the Inclusive Data Charter, examines a range of creative approaches to getting, using, and sharing inclusive data: from National Statistical Offices integrating administrative data sources to understand marginalized people’s needs, to young people with disabilities generating new data to inform policy.

Watch: UN Statistical Commission Side Event- Inclusive Data Amid and Beyond COVID-19

Hosted by the Inclusive Data Charter, this event explores how inclusive data is being generated and used to inform equitable COVID-19 responses and recoveries. The event features presentations from Tina Chui, Statistics Canada; Dr Yatta Kanu and Iman Beoku-Betts, Ministry of Education of Sierra Leone; Laura Reinoso, National Institute of Statistics of Paraguay; and Omar Seidu, Ghana Statistical Service.

Watch: Open Data as an Asset for Inclusive and Sustainable Development

This webinar was hosted by 254 Policy Cafe o Open Data Day 2021.The webinar explored progress made in enhancing data availability and access for use in sustainable policy development; opportunities for open data in advancing the national and international development agenda; experience of non-state actors in leveraging existing data sources; challenges in utilizing existing data and research in youth advocacy; and possible mitigation measures to enhance uptake of data and research.

Available Training

Know Violence Against Women Data (kNOwVAWdata)

The kNOwVAWdata course provides the depth and breadth of knowledge required to conduct rigorous and ethical prevalence surveys and other research on violence against women. The course leads to improved data literacy for overall measurement and use of data on violence against women (VAW). For further information see kNOwVAWdata.com.

Guidelines on data disaggregation for SDG Indicators using survey data

As a member of the working group on data disaggregation, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has taken numerous steps towards supporting Member Countries in the production of disaggregated estimates. 

Within this framework, these Guidelines offer methodological and practical guidance for the production of direct and indirect disaggregated estimates of SDG indicators having surveys as their main or preferred data source. Furthermore, the publication provides tools to assess the accuracy of these estimates and presents strategies for the improvement of output quality, including Small Area Estimation methods.

UN WOMEN: Counted and Visible Toolkit

The Counted and Visible: Toolkit to Better Utilize Existing Data from Household Surveys to Generate Disaggregated Gender Statistics (Counted and Visible Toolkit) provides a compilation of tools and mechanisms used by several countries to produce evidence to inform gender-responsive policies and catalyze actions to leave no one behind. The selected countries are linked to the UN Women’s global gender data programme, Women Count.

This  toolkit was developed by UN Women, in collaboration with the Intersecretariat Working Group on Household Surveys (ISWGHS), and benefited from the outcomes of the Counted and Visible global conference in 2020.

Communicating gender statistics for gender equality

This course is designed to guide journalists and statisticians to use statistics to report on the unique situation and needs of women and men. Through four modules, the course introduces journalists and statisticians to the unique and complementary roles they each can play in promoting gender equality through gender data, highlighting opportunities for collaboration and partnership between the two communities.

Gender-Based Analysis Plus (GBA+)

This course is designed as a basic introduction to GBA+. You will learn to define the key concepts of GBA+ and recognize how various identity factors can influence the experience of federal government initiatives. You will learn to identify how GBA+ can enhance the responsiveness, effectiveness, and outcomes of federal government initiatives while applying some foundational GBA+ concepts and processes.

WEBINAR: How CSOs Support the OGP Process in Kenya

WEBINAR: How CSOs Support the OGP Process in Kenya

Open Government Partnership (OGP) has provided an atypical opportunity for both government and civil society actors to meaningfully engage on country-specific issues.

While the initiative envisioned equal participation from these two groups of stakeholders, the Kenyan civil society has stepped up to steer the OGP process in times of political headwinds linked to General Elections and related transitions.

Join us for this webinar where Jessica Musila will provide an overview of Kenya’s OGP journey from a CSO perspective, and share recommendations to strengthen the process in Kenya from her 2020 report From Plans to Actions: How CSOs Support the OGP Process in Kenya.

We hope you can join us on Thursday, 25th February 2021 at 4: 00 PM EAT  for this amazing session!

Register here to attend.



Resource List 

The monthly resource list for February 2021 puts together content including a reading list, avenues for capacity building, and events from different stakeholders across the globe on the use of (open)data and for better service delivery in sectors such as Agriculture, Education, and Health. 

  • What AODN is reading this Month

PARIS 21: Data Flow Assessment Framework

National Statistical Offices need data portals to be designed to capture the validated indicators as soon as they are available in digital format for the first time in the dissemination processes. However, to reach this state, the design, and development of data portals could make effective use of a proper data flow analysis, informing their functionalities, especially considering the distinctions of handling data and associated metadata in the digital realm. The analysis will help identify areas requiring specific attention.The purpose of this guideline is to provide detailed information regarding the analysis of indicator dissemination processes in NSOs. This guideline lays out both basic and advanced work required in NSOs to set up a workflow-based, integrated dissemination solution for indicators. Read more 

SCORE for Health Data Technical Package: Global report on health data systems and capacity, 2020 

The SCORE for Health Data Technical Package brings together, for the first time, a set of the most effective interventions and tools for addressing critical data gaps and strengthening country health data for planning and monitoring health priorities. The package is based on five key interventions, represented by the acronym SCORE. Interventions S, C, and O focus on improving critical data sources, their availability and quality; while R and E aim to enhance the synthesis, analysis, access, and use of health data for action. Read more.

OD4D: Investing in the Innovative Use of Data to Drive Large-scale Positive Change — A Renewed Focus for OD4D III

The year 2021 looks promising for the OD4D initiative as the network continues to strengthen regional and global open data ecosystems across the world in order to spur social change, increase government transparency, and support the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda. Read more about what is coming up for the OD4D initiative here.

Planning and Implementing Household Surveys Under COVID-19

This note provides guidance on what to consider when planning to implement a face-to-face survey, partially or fully, during the continuing COVID-19 pandemic, in response to a call by countries during the third round of UNSD and World Bank survey on the impact of COVID-19 on national statistical offices (NSOs). In particular, this document focuses on considerations to help mitigate the risk of COVID-19 transmission during survey fieldwork and to maintain, to the extent possible, continuity in survey operations. The planning of the survey and the application of the recommendations in this document should be viewed as an iterative process that should be reviewed and adapted regularly by survey managers based on expected fluctuations in the COVID-19 situation. Read more.

Development Goals Can Work, Even Amid Crisis, But We Need to Measure Better

Five years into the 2030 Agenda, the use of global goals as a measurement framework for development is being tested. Despite the world being off-track on the SDGs, however, they may still offer the best option for an effective global response to COVID-19. In order to direct targeted action to the most vulnerable, data on people’s challenges must be disaggregated by gender and age, among other factors. Read more.

OGP: In Kenya, the OGP Process Provides Space to Redefine Civil Society Relations with Government

OGP opened an atypical opportunity for both government and civil society actors to proactively engage government on policy issues and thereby rebuild trust. Civil society leveraged the right to information for influence on accountability as the government showed its willingness to share previously inaccessible data. Despite the relatively low numbers of Kenyan CSOs engaged in the OGP platform, the recent From Plans to Actions report by the Local Development Research Institute (LDRI), with support from Luminate, reveals a steady and substantive increase in the number of organisations and quality of engagement. Read more.

IDRC: Evidence to address the economic and social impacts of COVID-19

As the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic continue to reverberate around the world, poverty and hunger levels in the world’s poorest nations are rising. In the world’s lower-income economies, there is a wide gap between need and ability to respond.Governments are under pressure to implement robust policies that address both immediate impacts and medium- to long-term aspirations for an inclusive and sustainable recovery, but they lack the financial means.In many cases they also lack evidence to make the best use of limited resources.Evidence is needed to support low- and middle-income countries in using the full range of policy instruments available to them to respond to the pandemic. Read more

Underserved or Over Surveilled: Can We Strike a Balance When Regulating Tech?

In her interview with the Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI), Neema Iyer, the executive director of Pollicy, an expert on data governance and online safety explores the understanding of data in the African context; the intersection of gender, data, and technology; and what Africa can do to ensure safety online amid a global surge in technology development. Read more 

WB Data Blog: Data-driven tools can support decision-making and improve implementation – especially in crises like COVID-19 

Data are necessary to design and implement development projects. However, traditional data collection is time-consuming and expensive, and usually requires face-to-face access to respondents. Governments and development organizations can sometimes find themselves in a catch-22, with well-designed interventions being most needed in the very places where timely data are impossible to collect. To improve its ability to respond to these challenges, the World Bank has developed an innovative toolbox for rapid data collection and evidence-based policymaking. Read more

A Frictionless Approach for Statistics and SDG Indicators

Worldwide, data-oriented organizations find themselves at a critical juncture when it comes to data management as they respond to the rapid growth in the variety, volume and velocity of supply and demand for data. Statistical organizations are at the forefront of these changes. This report considers how the Frictionless framework could contribute to data management within statistical organizations such as National Statistical Agencies (NSOs) and the World Bank. It bases its findings on interviews with key staff from the Bank and two of its partner NSOs, Statistics Sierra Leone (Stats SL) and the Colombian National Administrative Department for Statistics (DANE), as well as the documentation they provided. Read more

IDS: Open Data for Agriculture and Nutrition: A Literature Review and Proposed Conceptual Framework

This paper reviews the existing literature on Open Data for Agriculture and Nutrition (ODAN). The review was commissioned as a background paper for a performance evaluation of the Global Open Data for Agriculture and Nutrition programme (GODAN).Read more. 

Development Gateway: The State of Data in Open Contracting

 This paper presents practical solutions, namely metrics and tools, developed by the FAIRsFAIR project to pilot the FAIR assessment of research data objects in trustworthy data repositories. The metrics are mainly built on the indicators developed by the RDA FAIR Data Maturity Model Working Group. The tools’ design and evaluation followed an iterative process. We present two applications of the metrics: an awareness-raising self-assessment tool and an automated FAIR data assessment tool. Initial results of testing the tools with researchers and data repositories are discussed, and future improvements suggested including the next steps to enable FAIR data assessment in the broader research data ecosystem. Read more

Why having COVID-19 data on men and women is critical

Given the COVID-19 pandemic, understanding and addressing the impacts of both sex and gender on health outcomes has never been more crucial. It is from this rationale that the Sex, Gender, and COVID-19 project was born.The project is a partnership between Global Health 50/50, the International Center for Research on Women, and the African Population and Health Research Center. It is currently building the world’s largest database of sex-disaggregated data on COVID-19, investigating the roles sex and gender are playing in the outbreak, building the evidence base of what works to tackle gender disparities, and advocating for practical gender-responsive approaches to the pandemic. Read more.

  • Events/Webinars

UNSC Side Event: Data Stewardship And The Role Of NSOs In Changing The Data Landscape (Wed,10 Feb 2021)

In the new data ecosystem, NSOs (National Statistical Offices) can broaden their mandate and play the role of data stewards at different levels and with different arrangements, to ensure the efficient utilization of all data sources while safeguarding data quality, confidentiality and security.

This High-level event will be an opportunity to expand the discussion based on the more recent experiences of national statistical offices, as the COVID-19 response has in many cases accelerated innovation and collaboration and increased the use of new methods and data sources. Register.

UNSC Side Event: Enhancing financing for development data  Progress and innovations for implementing the CTGAP (Fri,12 Feb 2021)

In order to reduce data inequalities and ensure that countries can rely on resilient and agile statistical and data systems to respond to this crisis and future shocks, it is necessary to ensure that data and statistics are adequately and effectively resourced. This event, co-organized by the HLG-PCCB, UNSD and the Bern Network, will take stock of the latest developments and progress in implementing the Cape Town Global Action Plan for Sustainable Development Data (CTGAP) and the Dubai Declaration, with a particular focus on new approaches and mechanisms, for example the Bern Network’s Clearinghouse for Financing Development Data. Register.

UNSC Side Event: Building Partnership For Better Data For Sdgs: Global Network Of Data Officers And Statisticians (Thu, 18 Feb 2021)

Since its launch, the Global Network of Data Officers and Statisticians has grown to a strong global community of over 1,000 members and has facilitated information and knowledge sharing, the creation of thematic groups, the organization of webinars on building strong data ecosystems for SDGs, and much more. Moving forward, continuingly improving collaboration and coordination among data stakeholders is still needed.

This side event organized by the United Nations Statistics Division aims to bring together national statisticians, United Nations Resident Coordination Offices (UNRCOs), and other UN organizations to discuss how to build partnerships to fulfill data demand for SDGs and how to leverage the Global Network to improve collaboration and coordination. Register

UNSC Side Event: How the Data and Statistical Community Stepped Up to the New Challenges (Wed, 24 Feb 2021)

This event provides the opportunity to look at the challenge caused by the increased data demands amidst serious disruptions of statistical operations caused by the pandemic; review the responses in countries; and discuss what type of support has been effective in supporting countries over the last year. It will also offer the space to discuss how the statistical and data community can build on the experiences of responsiveness and timeliness that have characterized the work of many NSOs, to move towards strong data systems that can produce timely, quality data to serve the public good, and that are agile and resilient in a time of crises and disasters. Register.

Open Data for National Statistics: Progress and Future Plans (Wed, 24 Feb 2021)

This event aims to showcase the results of the latest report from ODIN 2020/21, as well as bring together representatives from various NSOs to discuss how they were able to achieve impressive progress in the latest ODIN. Representatives will share their successes, challenges, and future plans. Read more.

UNSC: 52nd session of the United Nations Statistical Commission 

The 52nd session of the United Nations Statistical Commission will be held in a scaled-down virtual format, consisting of four two-hour informal meetings, on 1 to 3 and 5 March 2021 from 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM Eastern. This decision was taken in light of the continued and ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the working arrangements for the subsidiary bodies of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).

  • Training 

PARIS21 Academy: Dynamic Dataviz Essentials

Dynamic Dataviz Essentials is an introductory course on the theory and the practice of dynamic dataviz offered by PARIS21 Academy. In this short course, you will have the opportunity to understand and learn the principles of dynamic dataviz, explore tools and libraries available and learn about their strengths and weaknesses, and watch a demo of D3.js. 

AI ETHICS: Global Perspectives

This course is designed to raise awareness of the societal impacts of technology and to give individuals and institutions the tools to pursue responsible AI use. Intended for current and future data scientists, policymakers, and business leaders, this course contains 19 modules on topics related to artificial intelligence. Each module consists of a video lecture accompanied by additional resources such as podcasts, videos, and readings.

Unlocking value from Open Data

This session looks at how Open Data can be matched to public and private sector agendas and explores a number of examples of Open Data impact from across Europe and the world.

Open Data as an agent of change

Session Overview: This session examines the key characteristics of successful Open Data initiatives.

WEBINAR: Citizens’ Opinions And Experiences On The Economic Effects Of Covid-19

WEBINAR: Citizens’ Opinions And Experiences On The Economic Effects Of Covid-19

We are pleased to invite you to our first webinar of the year. In this webinar, Dr. James Ciera, Senior Data Analyst and Country Lead, Kenya at Twaweza East Africa will present national research data from their  flagship Sauti Za Wananchi Program. The data is drawn from the 2nd National Call Round that polled 3,000 citizens across the country. 

The findings shed light into how Covid-19 has impacted the livelihoods of Kenyans across various demographic groups. More specifically, the data will expound on the following:  income sources for household; vulnerability and resilience at the household level; food security under COVID-19; Livelihoods under COVID-19;  and the national economy.

Dr. Ciera holds a Ph.D. in Statistical Sciences (University of Padova – Italy), MSc. in Applied Statistics and Biostatistics (Limburgs Universitair Centrum currently University of Hasselt – Belgium), and a Bsc. in Science – Statistics and Computer Science (Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology – Kenya). 

We hope you can join us on Thursday, 28th January 2021 at 4: 00 PM EAT  for what is set to be an informative session!

Register here to attend: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZMod-GrpjsiE9SF2MMLlNlOOXod-ssUdEUM

AODN January 2021 Resource List

AODN January 2021 Resource List

Resource List 

The monthly resource list for January 2021 puts together content including a reading list, avenues for capacity building, and events from different stakeholders across the globe on the use of (open)data and for better service delivery in sectors such as Agriculture, Education, and Health. 

  • What AODN is reading this Month 

A New Year’s Wish Invest in Data

Simply investing more and reallocating some resources from lower-return activities to basic data collection, in partnership with national institutions (which themselves require investment) that have a stake in their production and use, will make a difference. This is easier said than done: data collection and governance are usually deprioritized—in both developed and developing countries—in times of fiscal difficulty, as virtually every country in the world now faces. Read more.

Makueni: the small county leading action on open procurement in Kenya

Kenya’s government has yet to follow through on its commitments to fully implement open procurement in East Africa’s richest country. But a small county in the southeast of the country is leading reform and inspiring its neighbors as early results of open contracting reforms show increased competition and suggest greater efficiency, giving stakeholders the hope that implementing transparent, data-driven public procurement reforms is possible. Read more.

COVID-19: Where is the data?

The arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic has led many to argue that scholarly communication and publishing is undergoing a revolution, in terms of not only the wider opening of access to research but also the data underlying it. In this post, Julien Larrègue, Philippe Vincent-Lamarre, Frédéric Lebaron, and Vincent Larivière, discuss findings from their study of papers submitted to the preprint server medRxiv, which shows levels of open data to be stubbornly low. Read more.

COVID-19 lesson — local data skills matter

Since 2015, Data Collaboratives for Local Impact has worked to demonstrate the benefits of local data use to improve the sustainability of HIV programs, support gender equality, and enable growth. DCLI, a partnership between the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief and the Millennium Challenge Corporation, has empowered more than 2,000 data experts — including near a hundred data scientists — and supported over 50 innovations to give community organizations and leaders the information they need to make decisions that are more informed. Read more.

Comparing decentralized data publishing initiatives

This report explores a common design pattern for increasing access to data through the adoption of open standards for data. It compares how it is being applied across 14 different initiatives and shares insights into how this approach can be used. Read more.

The need for open data sharing in the era of global pandemics

Since the start of the pandemic, data on different countries’ case counts has been readily available. However, not all data is equally useful. In this post, Bernardo Gutierrez and Sabrina Li, from the Open COVID-19 Data Working Group and the Oxford Martin School, outline the need for much more detailed, open, and accessible sharing to inform science and policy making. The authors argue for open, accessible data sharing and highlight the need for data collection processes to be increasingly homogenized. Read more.

Embracing Innovation in Government: Global Trends 2020

For the fourth report in this series, OPSI and the MBRCGI’s research explores the powerful new technologies and opportunities that governments have at their disposal to let them better understand the needs of citizens. The research shows that governments must be cautious in exploring these possibilities and should leverage them in ways that do not undermine public trust. Governments need to balance the tensions of using data harvesting and monitoring, and technologies that can identify individuals, to serve the public interest, with the inevitable concerns and legitimate fears about “big brother” and risks of infringing on freedoms and rights. Read more

  • Events/Webinars 

CODATA: A Webinar on The Data Management Plan – Wed, Jan 20, 2021 

This Webinar is about why we need to embrace the development and use of data management plans (DMP) to guarantee the production and supply of quality data. The webinar discusses key components of a comprehensive DMP and suggests how to formulate a DMP. It discusses the link between metadata and data and how it affects the quality of data, and its use and reuse in the data ecosystem. The need to conduct a complexity analysis based on CFTER factors along a proposed data value chain model shall be discussed. The DMP issues that will be considered include IT costs; storage and backup; best practices; data licensing; data preservation; and self-assessment instruments.

UN World Data Forum: Strengthening the use of data in journalism- Thu, Jan 21,2021

Journalists require the skill set for understanding, analyzing, and visualizing the abundance of data in order to integrate data in storytelling for the citizens. This webinar will bring together various actors that contribute to strengthening the use of data in journalism. These include data producers working to provide quality, timely, reliable, and trusted data; civil society partners, and academia compiling open access data for journalists and increasing data literacy among journalists and; journalists promoting and using data to tell compelling stories.The webinar is part of the UN World Data Forum series and aims to promote the use of data in journalism

Data Doesn’t Drive (People Do)- The Future of Open Data Portals -Tue, Jan 26, 2021

The Future of Open Data Portals is a webinar series to discuss current best practices, experiences, and opportunities for collective action to ensure open data portals remain relevant and useful for the community they serve. Webinar 8 will feature Lucy Knight, from the Data Place, talking about “Data Doesn’t Drive (People Do)”

The things we’ve learned about collecting inclusive dataThur, Jan 28,2021

This session will focus on some of the successes and challenges that Development Initiatives, HelpAge International, Sightsavers and UN Women have faced in collecting inclusive data and how we have built on our learnings. A panel of experts will share practical tips to strengthen others’ work on inclusive data in a series of presentations, and the event will conclude with a Q&A session.

Open Data Charter and Principles– Mon, Feb 1,2021 

The International Open Data Charter will provide an overview of their organization and will provide a detailed look at the 6 principles of opendata.  It is often  difficult to adhere to all the principles from the start of an open data initiative – join the discussion to get insights on some approaches to achieving all the principles.

Records Management and Open DataTue, Feb 2, 2021

Africa Open Data’s first presentation of the year will be by Mr. Justus Wamukoya, Dean of the School of Information Studies at Moi Universities, and Ms. Anne Thurston, the founder of the Institute of Records Management. They will be presenting on A Matter of Trust and the importance of governments and large organizations to keep and hold records, and share information with the public as open data, to ensure accountability and integrity and will share examples from their decades of work across the continent.

  • Training 

Unlocking value from Open Data

This session looks at how Open Data can be matched to public and private sector agendas and explores a number of examples of Open Data impact from across Europe and the world.

Open Data as an agent of change

Session Overview: This session examines the key characteristics of successful Open Data initiatives.

Open Data Institute: Open Data in a Day 

Learn how to discover, use, and describe the benefits of open data, and how it impacts your organization on this live, instructor-led, online, and interactive course.

AODN December Resource List

AODN December Resource List

The monthly resource list for December 2020 puts together content including a reading list of reports released in 2020, avenues for capacity building, and events from different stakeholders across the globe on the use of (open)data and for better service delivery in sectors such as Agriculture, Education, and Health.

  • What AODN is reading this Month

Reports by stakeholders in the data ecosystem in the year 2020:

Open Data Inventory (ODIN) 202021

 The 2020/21 Open Data Inventory (ODIN) is the fifth edition of the index compiled by Open Data Watch. ODIN 2020/21 provides an assessment of the coverage and openness of official statistics in 187 countries, an increase of 9 countries compared to ODIN 2018/19. The year 2020 was a challenging year for the world as countries grappled with the COVID-19 pandemic. Nonetheless, and despite the pandemic’s negative impact on the capacity of statistics producers, 2020 saw great progress in open data. Explore a summary of the main findings from ODIN 2020/21 here

PARIS21(2020): Partner Report on Support to Statistics 2020

This report provides the key facts and evidence for more and better funding needs to development data. It includes a new section (Part 1) to provide a snapshot of funding to data and statistics during the time of COVID-19.
Part 2 of the report presents key findings by recipients and providers of
development co-operation in detail, including a section on the most recent
trend in funding to gender statistics. The annex explains the methodology used to produce this report, which includes the traditional approach that produces the classic results of PRESS and a new approach that can improve the timeliness and coverage of data on support to statistical capacity development. Read more.

The Open Ownership Principles

The Open Ownership Principles (OO Principles) set the gold standard for effective beneficial ownership (BO) disclosure. The OO Principles are intended to support governments implementing BO reforms and guide international institutions, civil society, and private sector actors in understanding and advocating for effective reforms. As the policy area of beneficial ownership transparency (BOT) continues to evolve, OO will continue to refine and update the OO Principles to ensure they remain a high but achievable standard that delivers impact. Read more.

The State of Open Data 2020 

How are researchers using open data in 2020, the State of Open Data 2020 report examines the attitudes and experiences of researchers working with open data. This year’s survey received around 4,500 responses from the research community and had an additional focus on research practices in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. It asked researchers how the pandemic was impacting their ability to carry out research, and their views on the reuse of data and collaboration. Read more. 

Report: A Global Movement for Better Data & Better Lives: Five years, five facts.

This report sets out how partners from the private sector, civil society, academia, and government are coming together to respond to common challenges that can be addressed by leveraging data and technology in a thoughtful and inclusive way. A suite of data visualizations and maps illustrate the many collaborations taking place, with over 70 partnerships brokered in 27 countries. Read more.

A Guide to Open Government and the Coronavirus 

This guide is a one-stop shop for the best current resources on how open government projects and approaches can support tackling the pandemic. It draws on over 350 crowdsourced examples from the open government community and amplifies the work of OGP’s wide range of thematic partners, many of whom have directly contributed their expertise to the guide. The guide is for open government reformers who are looking for practical ideas, tools, and resources that can be adapted to their particular context. The guide lays out recommendations and resources for an open response and an open recovery, and some long-term reforms that OGP members should consider to build trust and resilience to manage future shocks of this nature, and stronger societies overall. Read more.

Situating Open Data: Global Trends in Local Contexts

Situating Open Data provides several empirical accounts of open data practices, the local implementation of global initiatives, and the development of new open data ecosystems. Drawing on case studies in different countries and contexts, the chapters demonstrate the practices and actors involved in open government data initiatives unfolding within different socio-political settings. Read more.

Using Evidence in Policy and Practice: Lessons from Africa 

This book focuses on the use of evidence, and it was written to improve understanding of how using evidence can help inform and strengthen development policy, programmes, and practice in Africa. The book approaches evidence from the perspective of policymakers rather than researchers. It explores how African policymakers and development practitioners can apply interventions to promote the use of evidence to improve development outcomes and impacts. Read more. 

The Emergence of the Third Wave of Open Data

Inspired by conversations throughout the Summer of Open Data, this paper identifies the achievements and deficits in current and past approaches to open data and charts a new way forward for the movement that builds on lessons learned. Read more. 

UN World Data Forum one-pager

The 2020 Virtual UN World Data Forum’s one-pager provides highlights from the forum including session highlights and participant profiles.

  • Events 

Open Data Day 2021 will take place on Saturday 6th March

Open Data Day is the annual global celebration of open data facilitated by the Open Knowledge Foundation.Each year, groups from around the world organise local events to celebrate, promote and spread the use of open data in their communities. It is an opportunity to show the benefits of open data and encourage the adoption of open data policies in government, business and civil society.

Monthly  Planning Meeting: Africa Open Data Collaboratives 

Join us for in-person meetings for the monthly webinar in conjunction with the African Open Data Collaboratives(AODC) every first Tuesday of the month. Sign up on meetup.

Lessons from the pandemic: Building better gender data in the world of work (19th December 2020 )

This webinar will focus on the recent work developed by ILO to fill gender data gaps highlighted by the pandemic in work statistics. It will underline the range of gender-relevant analysis which is enabled and the types of gender data gaps that can be filled by implementing the latest statistical standards, notably those adopted at the 19th ICLS in October 2013. It will also identify some of the key measurement challenges identified by the ILO through recent pilot testing work, thereby raising awareness of the need for good measurement practices alongside the application of the latest standard. Register here.

  • Trainings

Data Stewardship: Developing a Data Reuse Strategy for Solving Public Problems

The Data Stewardship executive education course from the Open Data Policy Lab intends to attract and develop highly talented aspiring data stewards who are interested in better-incorporating data reuse into their operations. While an application to participate is free, participation will be limited to a small cohort who work on data collaboration issues or serve individuals tasked by their organization to act as data stewards. Candidates are invited to apply until Friday, 17th December 2020. 

Open Data Management In Agriculture And Nutrition Course

The Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on Open Data Data Management in Agriculture and Nutrition is a comprehensive introduction to open data and its applications for agriculture and nutrition. It deals with such themes as how to deal with different types of data formats and uses; and, the importance of reliability, accessibility, interoperability, and transparency of data. Key knowledge and concepts needed by the target audience are provided, as well as task-based training designed to support data professionals in their daily activities. 

Open Data for Data Users

The “Open Data for Data Users” e-learning course is designed to provide a broad overview of Open Data from a user standpoint and empower anyone to take full advantage of Open Data. This course is intended for anyone who wants to make better use of Open Data, including ordinary citizens, and assumes no prior knowledge of Open Data or technical skills. It is particularly intended for users in developing countries. This course provides users with the knowledge and specific skills they need to understand and use Open Data effectively and responsibly, and to participate fully in the Open Data community. 

AODN November Resource List

AODN November Resource List

The AODN monthly resource list for November 2020 puts together content including a reading list, avenues for capacity building, and events from different stakeholders across the globe on the use of (open)data and for better service delivery in sectors such as Agriculture, Education, and Health. 

The Potential Role of Open Data In Mitigating The COVID-19 Pandemic: Challenges and Opportunities

This article describes several use cases whereby open data have already been used globally in the COVID-19 response. It highlights major challenges to using these data and provides recommendations on how to foster a robust open data ecosystem to ensure that open data can be leveraged in both this pandemic and future public health emergencies. Read more 

Lessons for Open Data for Development Programmes

As more initiatives emerge, there is a need for stronger evidence to inform effective design and implementation that can mitigate inequities in access and maximize the development potential of open data. To address this evidence gap, this IDS Policy Briefing draws lessons from a performance evaluation of the Global Open Data for Agriculture and Nutrition (GODAN) initiative to make recommendations for funders and managers of similar open data development programs, as well as for those influencing governmental or organizational data policy. Read more

Leveraging OGP for a Transparent COVID-19 Response in Africa

Like governments around the world, African countries have shifted enormous resources to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. Given such massive spending, fiscal transparency is more important than ever to minimize financial mismanagement and corruption. Through OGP commitments, countries in Africa have embarked on important governance reforms to strengthen fiscal transparency. Read more

Open Data Standards Design Behind Closed Doors?

Sometimes (when building open data standards) we focus so much on building the technology that we forget to focus on power and to address the new power dynamics formed. Even if we try to contain it to technical spaces, standardization is more than a technical process. It is an exercise that enables data production and use to be reconsidered. Standards are not only shaping how data is produced but are also bringing about the silent, localized changes in bureaucracies. Therefore, it is important for us to not only understand how powerful open data standards can be in creating changes but to also address some of the challenges that are part of their design and implementation. Read more 

Third Wave of Open Data: How To Accelerate the Re-Use of Data for Public Interest Purposes While Ensuring Data Rights and Community Flourishing  

Even as ever greater amounts of data are generated and stored, the capability to actually access and re-use this data to spur positive social change remains stunted. This discrepancy occurs despite the success of the open data movement, which built on earlier Freedom of Information (FOI) legislation in pushing at the boundaries of transparency and accessibility. Around the world, open data has played an important role in improving government accountability and service delivery, empowering citizens to make better decisions, creating economic opportunity, and solving big public problems. But recent developments—including the struggles to use data effectively to address COVID-19—show these successes are not enough. Read more

Global Procurement Responses to COVID-19: How To Do Better In An Emergency

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, governments around the world have been forced to procure essential goods and services quickly, in order to save lives. Some procurement agencies have also recognized that being transparent about emergency purchasing is crucial to discouraging corruption, ensuring market confidence, and maintaining public trust. Accordingly, they have established new portals or websites for disclosing contracting data relating to coronavirus procurement. Read more

Reinventing How COVID-19 Data Is Shared

As disinformation continues to spread, civil society organizations and academics are developing new ways to share data about the pandemic. Read more

Individual, Collective and Intermediated: Three Roads To Data Empowerment

We don’t yet have a definite answer on how to handle and govern ‘our’ data and what perspective is best suited to shape the data empowerment concept. However, we do recognize the limitations of the approaches and models that put the individual at the centre. Having more of a say in how one’s data is used, does not automatically result in greater control, actual decision-making power or agency. And so we see value in exploring in more depth the practical use of collective and fiduciary approaches, including data trusts, data cooperatives and certain forms of data commons models that could facilitate more inclusive and fair data governance and data sharing. Read more.

A Global Movement for Better Data And Better Lives

This report sets out how partners from the private sector, civil society, academia, and government are coming together to respond to common challenges that can be addressed by leveraging data and technology in a thoughtful and inclusive way. Read more 


BOOK LAUNCH EVENT: Situating Open Data:  Global Trends in Local Contexts. Thu Nov 19,2020 at 18:00 – 19:30 (EAT)

Open data and its effects on society are always woven into infrastructural legacies, social relations, and the political economy. This raises questions about how our understanding and engagement with open data shifts when we focus on its situated use.

The new book Situating Open Data sheds light on these questions, providing empirical studies of open data practices, their local implementation, and the development of open data ecosystems. Meet the authors and editors to get first-hand insights from their recent publication on open data, global practices, and local use. Register here

WEBINAR: How can data help cities to address concerns around COVID-19? Wed Nov 18, 2020 at 14:00 (GMT)

Data is integral to making decisions about the Covid-19 pandemic in your city. But do you know what data you have? Do you make the best use of it? Do you know where the gaps are? Register here

WEBINAR: Taking stock of the Socio-Economic and Political Impact of COVID-19 in Africa Wed Nov 18, 2020, at  17:00 ( EAT)

ICYMI: The ODI Summit 2020 

The ODI Summit is the ODI’s flagship event, bringing people from a broad range of sectors, backgrounds and countries together to discuss critical issues around the future of data. Watch the recording

Available Training 

Open Data in a Day -ODI Wed Dec 2, 2020

Learn how to discover, use, and describe the benefits of open data, and how it impacts your organization on this live, instructor-led, online, and interactive course.

Open Data for Data Users-World bankSelf-Paced

The “Open Data for Data Users” e-learning course is designed to provide a broad overview of Open Data from a user standpoint, and empower anyone to take full advantage of Open Data. This course is intended for anyone who wants to make better use of Open Data, including ordinary citizens, and assumes no prior knowledge of Open Data or technical skills. It is particularly intended for users in developing countries. This course provides users with the knowledge and specific skills they need to understand and use Open Data effectively and responsibly, and to participate fully in the Open Data community. 

Open Data for Policy Makers- World Bank 

This course is primarily intended for public policymakers in governments that are considering the establishment or expansion of an Open Data program. It assumes no prior knowledge of Open Data or technical skills.

Open Data Essentials- ODI

Learn all the essentials of open data with this easy to follow, online course. This program has been designed to enable you to discover what open data is and how it is changing the lives of everyone on our planet.

Big Data, AI, Public Service, and Covid-19 Response

Big Data, AI, Public Service, and Covid-19 Response

Big Data and Artificial Intelligence continue to evolve rapidly with use cases especially in the private sector mushrooming across the African continent. With very few public use cases of AI and Big Data within the public service across African countries, there is potential for greater uptake and thus greater benefits of AI and big data within the public service across Africa. It is however important to situate this optimism in the context of realities, constraints, challenges, and discourses on ethics and rights that come into play when implementing Big Data and AI-driven solutions in the public service sector.

AODN’s August webinar on Big Data, AI and the Public Service explored the use of  Big Data and AI in the public service by exploring the current Big Data and AI ecosystem in Sub-Saharan Africa and Kenya, the opportunities and challenges for Big Data and AI within the Kenyan public service and across Africa, opportunities for big data and AI-driven solutions addressing the Covid-19 pandemic, ethics, and digital rights and how other stakeholders can also support these efforts. 


Elizabeth Thuo is a data scientist at Qhala where she is involved in building data platforms and ventures that solve key societal and economic problems. She holds a Masters of Science in Statistics with Data Analytics and a degree in Actuarial Science. She has previous experience in customer experience and financial reporting.

Watch it on YouTube


Read our report on The State of Big Data for Development in Africa

If you have questions for our presenter, please tweet @networkfordata or submit your comments via YouTube.

AODN October Resource List

AODN October Resource List

The AODN monthly resource list for October 2020 puts together content including a reading list, avenues for capacity building, and events from different stakeholders across the globe on the use of (open)data and for better service delivery in sectors such as Agriculture, Education, and Health. 

  • What AODN is reading this Month

Who is being left behind in COVID-19 data?

Despite the many benefits of data, the data processes and data-related outcomes on COVID-19 have shown the potential to marginalize and exclude specific individuals and population groups across the stages of the data value chain, from the data production to data use, i.e., the data identification, collection, analysis, dissemination, and use. In the current situation of the COVID-19 pandemic, marginalization and exclusion have severe ramifications, including loss of life. Read more

With crisis comes innovation: How COVID-19 is changing National Statistical Systems

Having accurate and timely data has become the foundation of a resilient and effective government, and national statistical systems are central to this. These systems have been placed under extreme pressure during the crisis. Temporary office closures and disruptions to operations and surveys have jeopardized dozens of statistical publications. Increased demand for new and more timely data on the impacts of the pandemic have stretched available resources. And pragmatic decisions have had to be made to reprioritize and redeploy staff and resources as well as to innovate to deliver new statistical products. Read more

When the data stop: Five lessons for data-driven decision-making in crises

The COVID-19 global crisis has highlighted data’s crucial and transformative potential. Governments, the private sector, civil society, and international institutions are striving to collect and analyze data to understand and contain the pandemic; and address the socio-economic effects of pandemic response. But amidst this renewed emphasis and demand for hyper-local, real-time data and evidence, we’re also faced with an acute challenge: What happens when the data… stop? Read more

StatCom7 ends with a call on Africa to prioritize digitalizing the continent’s statistical systems

The Seventh Session of the Statistical Commission for Africa (StatCom7) ended on Thursday,15th October 2020  with high-level participants emphasizing the importance of digitizing the continent’s statistical systems; use of big data; data and statistics coordination; and political will for effective statistics development in Africa. 

The three-day meeting saw participants in the virtual meeting discuss ways to devise innovative statistical solutions to strengthen national statistical systems to keep decision-makers informed of economic, social, and environmental developments in real-time. Read more

Mortality Data in COVID-19 and Beyond: The Bedrock of Global Health Security

Countries need both accurate and timely mortality data and an understanding of the scope and scale of the pandemic in real-time to inform a data-driven response. What we are seeing today—and what experts have known for some time—is that many countries lack this data, which is reflective of a longstanding underinvestment in civil registration and vital statistics (CRVS) systems. To respond to COVID-19 in the near-term and bolster global health security in the long-term, it is clear: we need better mortality data. Read more. 

Restoring Data Rights in Africa Pre and Post COVID-19

The use of contact tracing applications by governments across the world especially in Africa is not without risks to citizens. Data used for contact tracing may upend some of our fundamental rights, such as the right to know which/how information is used, the right to say no to information sharing, and the right to assemble. Many are enshrined in national legal frameworks and international treaties because the applications will require our personal data. Read more.

How to climb the Data Quality Pyramid

Whether it’s fighting climate change or finding the nearest bus stop, creating insight requires data. The higher the quality of that data, the greater and more reliable the insight. What does good data look like, and how do we ascertain its quality level? In this article, Datopian defines the varying degrees of data quality, concentrating on three crucial assessment criteria: tidiness, syntax, and semantics. Read more.

  • Events 

Africa Open Data Collaboratives- East Africa  (Tue, 3 Nov 2020)

The Africa Open Data Network hosts a one hour meeting with option to connect by Zoom-in the first Tuesday of each month to hear from others on their work on open data in government, business, and civil society- in-progress projects, requests for support, updates from the Africa Open Data team, and potential to participate in supporting and representing in upcoming events. 

ODI Summit 2020: Data Futures (10-11 Nov 2020)

The ODI Summit is the ODI’s flagship event, bringing people from a broad range of sectors, backgrounds and countries together to discuss critical issues around the future of data. Join over 1000 attendees to enjoy an exciting line-up of keynotes, high-profile speakers, interactive panels, roundtables, performances, taster workshops and demos exploring key themes about the future of data.

AfricaTech 2020 

AfricaTech is the largest virtual gathering of individuals and organisations using enterprise technology to accelerate digital transformation and drive Africa’s journey to The 4th Industrial Revolution (4IR). Experience AI-powered networking, 100+ use-cases, and insight and solutions from the world’s leading tech vendors.

Incase You Missed It

Data for Development: towards a more integrated agenda from the global south

Data for development and the use of new technologies is creating new opportunities for economic and civil participation, better decision making and greater inclusion on the one hand, and new barriers on the other. Many important global efforts have emerged around civil registration and vital statistics, open government data, big data and artificial intelligence as well as privacy and data protection. Yet, many of these efforts work in silos and also face interconnected barriers to advancing a transformative agenda on data for sustainable development. How can we ensure coordinated perspectives and research from the global south inform holistic approaches to data governance, innovation, and use?

Webinar – How countries are helping each other leverage administrative data for the SDGs

The Global Partnership and Cepei co-hosted the session TA1.01 “Uncovering Opportunity in Unusual Places: How countries are helping each other leverage administrative data for the SDGs” at the UN World Data Forum 2020. This session presents strategies, actions and partnerships that countries have developed for the use of administrative records, in response to COVID-19. It will feature examples from three countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America and the Caribbean. Watch the recording here.  

Webinar – Citizen-generated data for policy and decision-making in Kenya

This webinar, hosted by the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data and GIZ will be an opportunity to present Citizen-Generated Data (CGD) guidelines on the production of better quality CGD that can be used for policy and decision-making but also complement official statistics. The guidelines were developed because of expressed demand from both state and non-state actors in Kenya. Watch the recording here

Available Training 

Open Data in a Day (Wed, 2 December 2020)

Learn how to discover, use, and describe the benefits of open data, and how it impacts your organization on this live, instructor-led, online, and interactive course.

Choosing the right format for open data

The ‘format’ of an open dataset refers to the way in which the data is structured and made available for humans and machines. Choosing the right format helps ensure the data can be simply managed and reused. To maximize the reuse of data, it may be necessary for a publisher to use a number of formats and structures available across different platforms to suit users’ needs.

Open Data for Data Users

The “Open Data for Data Users” e-learning course is designed to provide a broad overview of Open Data from a user standpoint and empower anyone to take full advantage of Open Data. This course is intended for anyone who wants to make better use of Open Data, including ordinary citizens, and assumes no prior knowledge of Open Data or technical skills. It is particularly intended for users in developing countries. This course provides users with the knowledge and specific skills they need to understand and use Open Data effectively and responsibly, and to participate fully in the Open Data community. 

Presenting Data Effectively 

Human life is bound together by millions and billions of data points. Knowing how to analyse, visualise and bring out the story from this data is a powerful skill that can paint the world in a new light.  This course covers how to find and interpret data; telling data-driven stories; creating basic graphics (charts and infographics); and communicating data effectively in reports and slide presentations.

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