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The United Nations Statistical Commission, established in 1947, is the highest body of the global statistical system. It brings together the Chief Statisticians from member states from around the world. It is the highest decision making body for international statistical activities especially the setting of statistical standards, the development of concepts and methods and their implementation at the national and international level.

The Statistical Commission oversees the work of the United Nations Statistics Division (UNSD), and is a Functional Commission of the UN Economic and Social Council. The fifty-third session of the Statistical Commission will be held virtually from 1-4 March 2022.

PARIS21 will be both organising and taking part in a range of events at the 53rd UNSC. A full calendar of events is available and will be updated on a regular basis.

Key sessions include:

High-level event

Financing for data and statistics - the role of NSOs, 16 Feb 2022 09:00 - 10:30 EST

To deliver on the data needs of the 2030 Agenda and country development priorities, sufficient funding needs to be ensured for national statistical systems. While some progress has been made since the adoption of the 2030 Agenda in 2015, many low- and middle-income countries are still not able to secure resources to modernise their national statistical and data systems and in some cases even to fully implement regular statistical programmes or a full civil registration and vital statistics systems.

In October 2021, at the Third UN World Data Forum, two new complementary solutions were launched by the Bern Network on Financing Data for Development and the World Bank to mobilize smarter finance for development data. While the traditional approach had focused mostly on raising funds from external sources and improving their coordination these new mechanisms are also aimed at helping raise the levels of domestic resource allocation. More importantly, however, efforts continue to be made at national level.

This high-level event will provide space for an initial discussion on how to define the role of NSOs in bringing together the parts of national data and statistical systems in decision-making around the allocation and utilization of international aid, and how they can ensure that national priorities are effectively channelled through the various mechanisms for the implementation of the Clearinghouse. It will also allow for exchange with financing for development experts and UN Resident Coordinator Offices on how NSOs could play a bigger role in the government decision-making processes in the allocation of internal resources for data and statistics.


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Side events 

Applications of the Statistical Performance Indicators (SPI), February 17th 2022  9AM - 10:15 AM EST

The continuing convergence of crises – including the COVID pandemic, economic recovery efforts, the climate crisis, and more – have accelerated digitization and reliance on new data types, sources, and actors. These rapid changes in the production and consumption of data have increased the range of demands on national statistics systems. Statistical producers must become more agile and must transform and deepen their analytical capacities and processes to generate their products and services and meet new needs as they arise.

Several development partners have created instruments and tools designed to assess a country's statistical system. For example, the World Bank has launched the Statistical Performance Indicators (SPI) to measure the performance of countries’ national statistical systems and track their development progress. The United Nations’ National Quality Assurance Frameworks Manual for Official Statistics (UN NQAF Manual) provides guidance for countries to implement a national quality assurance framework. PARIS21 encourages and assists countries to design, implement, and monitor National Strategies for the Development of Statistics (NSDS).

This UNSC side event will shine a light on several different approaches and tools designed to assess countries’ statistical capacity and reflect on how such assessments are country-led and respond to demand. The event will bring together an expert panel, moderated by the Director of the Development Data Group, Haishan Fu, including a Practice Manager in the World Bank’s Poverty and Equity Global Practice, Benu Bidani, the Director General of the National Institute of Statistics of Rwanda, Yusuf Murangwa, the director of the United Nations Statistics Division, Stefan Schweinfest, and Catherine Kruger who is an inter-regional advisor at PARIS21 focusing on the Statistical Capacity Monitor, statistical legislation and providing support on development of NSDS to share their experiences.



From COVID-19 response to NSO resilience and preparedness: Lessons from the Survey on the implementation of the Cape Town Action Plan for Sustainable Development Data, 17 Feb 2022 11:00-12:15 EST

This side event will be an opportunity to see beyond the immediate COVID-19 crisis and to reflect on the insights gained through a series of global surveys of national statistical offices conducted over the last two years, including the recent survey of NSOs on the implementation of the Cape Town Global Action Plan for Sustainable Development Data (conducted by the World Bank, the United Nations Statistics Division, and PARIS21), as well as four rounds of surveys of NSOs to monitor the evolving impacts of the pandemic on statistical operations (implemented by the World Bank and United Nations Statistics Division, in collaboration with the Regional Commissions of the United Nations). By examining several key aspects of national statistical systems, including strategic priorities, legal framework, ITC readiness and resources, the surveys revealed whether countries are built to be resilient, fit for purpose, and ready for future challenges. It also provides valuable information on financing needs expressed by countries to implement CTGAP.

The session will consist of a panel discussion with NSO leaders and representatives from the global statistical community, who will examine how to better collect and share timely, actionable information on the capacity and financing needs of NSOs and other members of the national and international statistical systems, with the objective of being able to better monitor and strengthen the preparedness and resilience of national statistical systems.





Partnering to strengthen citizen-generated data: Learning from the experiences of national statistical offices, 10 Feb 2022 09:00-10:00 EST

This event will be an opportunity to hear from National Statistical Offices and the Statistics community on progress made in strengthening CGD and what remains.

This event is jointly hosted by GPSDD, PARIS21, UN Women and the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) and will be an opportunity to share the experiences of these institutions and reach out to the development community on our plan to develop a multi-year, multi-country project on CGD for the Eastern Africa Region.

This project is aimed at establishing and or strengthening the normative frameworks necessary for the production and use of citizen generated data for reporting on the SDGs, as well as supporting the improvement of the quality of data produced through these sources in close collaboration with National Statistics Offices (NSOs) and Civil Society Organizations (CSOs).


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The second phase of the Global Strategy to Improve Agricultural and Rural Statistics: a fit-for-purpose approach of capacity strengthening in Africa, 10 Feb 2022, 11:00-12:30 EST

This  side event, organised by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in partnership with the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) and PARIS21, will look at the potential role of the Global Strategy to Improve Agriculture and Rural Statistics (GSARS), in the development of agricultural statistics in the 25 beneficiary countries.

The GSARS is a long-term coordinated initiative to address the decline in the agricultural statistical systems in developing countries and enable the production of more and better agricultural statistics. The second phase of the project will continue its work started during Phase 1, with the aim to strengthen the statistical capacities of countries through the provision of training and technical assistance.

Experts will share their experience of introduction of the GSARS plan in their countries, how it fits with the national strategies of development of agricultural statistics and with opportunities offered with the future implementation of the 50x2030 Initiative.





Stats Café Series: Innovations in Data Dissemination in Asia-Pacific, 21 Feb, 07:00-08:00 CET

This Stats Café, organised by UN ESCAP, will discuss the main features of a modern data portal and present best practices to guide the development of better platforms.  

This Stats Café aims to:

  • Discuss the current state of national data dissemination in Asia-Pacific. What technologies and approaches are used? What are the features of a state-of-the-art data portal?
  • Share country experiences in setting up national data dissemination platforms. What choices had to be made? What have been the challenges and lessons learned? What has been the impact in supporting evidence-based decision making?
  • Provide practical advice in adopting new platforms or enhancing existing systems. What recommendations should be adopted? What open-source platforms are available to countries?



Welcome remarks, Ms. Rachael Joanne Beaven, Director, Statistics Division, ESCAP

Data dissemination in the digital age

  • Mr. Rajiv Ranjan, Innovation Team Lead, PARIS21, and
  • Mr. Eric Swanson, Director of Research and Co-founder, Open Data Watch

Data portals in Asia-Pacific

  • Mr. Dayyan Shayani, Statistician, Statistics Division, ESCAP

National SDG dissemination with Open SDG

  • Ms. Anahit Safyan, Member of the State Council on Statistics, Armenia

SDMX data portal with .Stat Suite

  • Ms. Taweesap Srikwan, Statistician, Senior Professional Level, National Statistical Office, Thailand

Q&A and discussion


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5th Round Table Meeting of Small Island Developing States, 03 Feb 2022 Concluded

On 3rd February, PARIS21 together with UNDESA, UN-OHRLLS, SPC, Caricom and Caribank organised the 5th Round Table Meeting on Statistics in Small Island Developing States (SIDS). The meeting brought together a broad range of development partners and country representatives from a range of SIDS and focused on pressing statistical issues in their countries. Participants discussed in particular challenges related to the development of climate change data to respond to the growing reporting and measurement demands of international agreements.

Obligations to report on climate change measures have increased significantly for SIDS under the Paris Agreement, and many SIDS are struggling with a severe lack of resources to be able to meet their obligations. Despite this, countries presented some important progress that is being made at country level, such as developing inter-agency committees, employing dedicated staff on climate change statistics, and working with development partners to put together environmental accounts.

In particular, Ms Heidi Shroderus-Fox, Acing High Representative for the LDCs, LLDCs and SIDS at UN-OHRLLS noted that climate change does not take place in a vacuum but is linked to multiple other sectors, such as energy, employment, and population growth.

Some initiatives were identified going forward, such as helping countries to further define the data ecosystems related to climate change in their countries, and supporting the development of capacity for climate change statistics in NSOs.


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