The #TenYearChallenge (sharing photos that show progress between 2009 and 2019) is now a major social media trend. As you can see in the above photos, PARIS21 has come a long way during this period.
This year marks ten years since the 2009 PARIS21 Consortium meeting in Dakar, Senegal. At the time, PARIS21 was celebrating its own ten-year anniversary and co-organised a high-level event with the Government of Senegal. With an opening speech by the president of Senegal, His Excellency Maître Abdoulaye WADE, the meeting brought an important spotlight on statistics in the midst of the Millenium Development Goals. The nearly 400 participants from around the world - policy makers, statisticians, analysts and representatives from civil society and multilateral organisations - discussed statistical capacity building in developing countries.
In the ten years since the Dakar Consortium, PARIS21 has passed many major milestones. The International Household Survey Network (IHSN) and the Accelerated Data Program (ADP) programmes, co-hosted by PARIS21 and the World Bank, helped improve survey data. Our NSDS Guidelines have contributed to the uptake of strategic planning in statistics in over 50 countries over the last 10 years. The Informing a Data Revolution (IDR) project, financed by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, asssessed the gaps of developing countries in fully leveraging the data revolution. PARIS21 has also helped bring a spotlight to the issues around data for development. This is why we were happy to contribute to the OECD’s 2017 Development Co-operation Report (DCR) on Data for Development.
Currently, we are focusing on strengthening our Advanced Data Planning Tool (ADAPT) to help countries plan, measure and report on statistical activities. The tool is being used by fourteen countries around the world. We also created the “Capacity Development 4.0” (CD4.0) framework, which is aimed at helping countries develop the statistical capacities necessary to attain development objectives.
Globally, we are playing an instrumental role in many important initiatives. From helping promote and implement the Cape Town Global Action Plan (CTGAP) in our role as a permanent issue partner of the HLG-PCCB, to working with many donor countries, statistical offices and other organisations to establish a “Bern Network on Financing Data for Development”, where we are proudly helping with the analytical underpinnings of the costing and governance of a possible new funding mechanism for data and statistics.
As part of a growing recognition of the contribution of PARIS21 in raising the profile of development statistics on the national, regional and global stage, and following a request by the PARIS21 Chair and members of the Executive Committee, the OECD Secretary-General has decided to elevate the position of Manager to Executive Head of the PARIS21 Secretariat. The reclassification will help strengthen PARIS21’s high-level engagement with government and development partners.
Where will we be ten years from now? In 2029, the international community will be coming to terms with the end of the SDG era and new development goals will likely be established. Over the next ten years, our challenge will be to equip national statistical systems with the right skills to adapt to a constantly evolving data ecosystem. We look forward to working with partners to develop our upcoming 5-year strategy (2021-2025), which will allow us to re-assess how we can best contribute to strengthening national statistical systems. Will the #TenYearChallenge still be around ten years from now? We certainly hope so.