Such forums and declarations are key to happy and prosperous societies.

A ‘Dubai Declaration’ has been launched at the end of the second edition of the United Nations (UN) World Data Forum on Wednesday.

Hailing the declaration as a landmark move, senior UN officials said it would bolster the funding for better data and statistics for sustainable development.

“While it is clear that the data revolution is creating an enormous impact, it has not benefited everyone equally,” UN deputy secretary-general Amina Mohammed said in a statement at the forum.

“Our task is to make sure that data is available to all people. We must make sure it is harnessed to support the implementation of the 2030 Agenda at all levels and in all regions and countries,” she said. “Yet, we urgently need to bridge important gaps. Funding for data and statistical systems remains limited. And beyond funding, we need political, technical and advocacy support in all areas.”

The Dubai Declaration calls for the establishment of an innovative funding mechanism, open to all stakeholders, that will mobilise both domestic and international funds to strengthen the capacity of national data and statistical systems.

Speaking at the closing session of the forum, senior UN officials said the funding mechanism will be created under the guidance of representatives of statistical systems. Furthermore, different data and donor communities will support the decision-making on the operational modalities and on raising resources to address the data needs for the full implementation of the UN sustainable development goals (SDGs).

UN undersecretary-general for economic and social affairs Liu Zhenmin said: “My expectation is that the declaration, the outcome of the discussions at this forum, will help us shape the way forward to promote ‘more and better funding’ for data and statistics.

“To achieve the ambitions set on in the Cape Town Global Action Plan (launched at the first edition of the World Data Forum) both increased domestic resources and international support will be needed,” he added.

Abdulla Nasser Lootah, director-general of the Federal Competitiveness and Statistics Authority (FCSA), said: “The insightful outcomes we have achieved during this important gathering are essential for unifying visions and empowering individuals, institutions and governments to embrace modern technologies and harness data to serve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) locally, regionally and internationally.”

Switzerland to host NEXT Forum in 2020

It was announced on the final day that Switzerland will be hosting the next UN World Data Forum in Bern from October 18 to October 21, 2020. The announcement was made at a Press meet by Gabriella Vukovich, co-chair of the High-level Group for Partnership, Coordination and Capacity-Building for Statistics for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the group that oversees the organisation of the forum.

Stefan Schweinfest, director of the UN Statistics Division said: “The UAE has set a high standard of support, and the energy and engagement behind the Forum continues to build.”

KT NANO EDIT

Using data to better lives

Data is the new oil and harnessing its power will make lives better. But it needs collaborations on the global front, so that data-sharing can be enhanced and defences for cyber security can be built. The Dubai Declaration is a step in the right direction. It will facilitate funding, help build systems, and ensure continuous engagement with the rest of the world. Such forums and declarations are key to happy and prosperous societies. 

dhanusha@khaleejtimes.com

 

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