The 2013 annual Board meetings presented a great opportunity for PARIS21 members to discuss one of the key activities of the Secretariat: support to NSDS design and implementation. As the finalé of the annual meetings, a technical session entitled “Moving from NSDS Design to NSDS Implementation” took place on the afternoon of 11 april. The objective of this technical session was to bring together statisticians, policy makers and donors to discuss concrete actions to shift from NSDS design to NSDS implementation.

During plenary and breakout group sessions, the participants exchanged their views and proposed recommendations on: 
   • How to successfully implement NSDSs.
   • How to get sustainable funding for NSDS implementation.
   • How to better mainstream statistics into policymaking processes in developing countries.  

Two speakers, from different perspectives presented their views on NSDS.  
    • Mr. Yuba Raj Bhusal, Secretary of the National Planning Commission of Nepal presented the statistical system and  the experience of his country in implementing a Consolidated National Statistical Plan (CNSP). He compared the NSDS to a “bible for statistics” for monitoring the global and regional development agenda.

   • Mr. Joseph Tedou, Director General of the National Statistical Institute of Cameroon, explained the main constraints of his country in implementing the NSDS which is considered a priority on par with the other national economic policies. He presented the whole NSDS process in Cameroon (since 2008) and highlighted the main constraints encountered, mainly on funding mobilisation and human resources.

After these introductory remarks, the participants were divided into 3 groups:  
   • Group 1: What are the challenges in financing statistical activities (country and development partners’ perspectives) and the appropriate recommendations/mechanism to improve and sustain funding for statistics?
   • Group 2: What specific short- or long-term activities can be undertaken by both country and development partners toward successful NSDS implementation while enabling the NSS to adapt to changes and address the new and increasing demands on statistics associated with it?
   • Group 3: What concrete strategies/actions can be put in place to actively involve policymakers to support and finance national statistical development? Alternatively, what concrete actions must statisticians do to ensure the relevance of statistics in policymaking? (Francophone Group)

The 3 groups came back with concrete recommendations and proposals which will be implemented as pilot activities in 2013/14 by the PARIS21 Secretariat. A report on this pilot activities will be presented at the 2014 annual meetings.

The participants assessed/rated this session very well in the satisfaction questionnaire and insisted on the fact that they highly appreciated the group sessions. It is well noted and there will surely be more group discussions next year!

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