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UN needs Big Data in planning for Future Sustainable Development Goals

UN needs Big Data in planning for Future Sustainable Development Goals

Even the United Nations will be using Big Data! Various bodies and agencies are quickly realizing its benefits and capabilities to the development sector. In 2014, the UN Statistical Commission established a working group mandated to provide direction of a global program on Big Data. This group works on finding solutions, promoting capacity building, and sharing experiences of Big Data applications.

At the end of this year, the UN will launch a new set of Sustainable Development Goals to last until the year 2030. These will take over where the Millennium Development Goals left off. These goals are drivers of development efforts around the world.

Before these goals are devised, many questions need to be answered. These questions relate to the financial flows between all agents in the development sector.

The importance of data and analytics was emphasized in a blog by Gail Hurley, Policy Specialist on Development Finance, UNDP and Jos Verbeek, Advisor, Office of the President’s Special Envoy (SEM), World Bank. They claim that efficient data collection and reporting will be required.  This will help in the creation of a framework for funding the new sustainable development agenda.

The interoperability between data systems of different UN bodies and agencies have not been working together. For example, in understanding how much aid was being provided to low-income countries in a given year. The UN, the IMF, and the World Bank will each report a different answer to that question.

The reason for this challenge being several factors. First, none of these bodies use the same definition or standards of a ‘low-income country’. Second, when they report on international financial flows, the accuracy varies.

Third, each agency will count the flows of aid in different methods. Lastly, since financing has taken on many forms it has become much more difficult to decipher how much money is being given to development. The current climate between the UN agencies allows for much confusion.

What Big Data offers is a more accurate picture of how the money is flowing through these countries. Hurley and Verbeek suggest that the UN take advantage of this data for the benefits in financial planning. It can be harmonized in such a way that data, methods, resources will be accessible in common formats.

In coming up with the new Sustainable Development Goals agenda, big data can play a big role in providing intelligence to governments involved in the planning.

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Qlik’s vision is a data-literate world, where everyone can use data and analytics to improve decision-making and solve their most challenging problems. A private company, Qlik offers real-time data integration and analytics solutions, powered by Qlik Cloud, to close the gaps between data, insights and action. By transforming data into Active Intelligence, businesses can drive better decisions, improve revenue and profitability, and optimize customer relationships. Qlik serves more than 38,000 active customers in over 100 countries.

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SIRIM is a premier industrial research and technology organisation in Malaysia, wholly-owned by the Minister​ of Finance Incorporated. With over forty years of experience and expertise, SIRIM is mandated as the machinery for research and technology development, and the national champion of quality. SIRIM has always played a major role in the development of the country’s private sector. By tapping into our expertise and knowledge base, we focus on developing new technologies and improvements in the manufacturing, technology and services sectors. We nurture Small Medium Enterprises (SME) growth with solutions for technology penetration and upgrading, making it an ideal technology partner for SMEs.

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HashiCorp provides infrastructure automation software for multi-cloud environments, enabling enterprises to unlock a common cloud operating model to provision, secure, connect, and run any application on any infrastructure. HashiCorp tools allow organizations to deliver applications faster by helping enterprises transition from manual processes and ITIL practices to self-service automation and DevOps practices. 

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IBM is a leading global hybrid cloud and AI, and consulting services provider, helping clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. Nearly 3,800 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM’s hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently, and securely. IBM’s breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and business services deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM’s legendary commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity, and service. For more information, visit www.ibm.com