Author Archives: Development Initiatives

Making the case for disaggregated data: A look at Ethiopia

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development lays out an ambitious vision of a future where no one lives in extreme poverty. At the heart of the Sustainable Development Goals is a commitment to ensure that ‘no one is left behind’ and that no goal is considered met unless met for all. But if we are to truly realise this ambition we need to move beyond existing statistics that track national averages and move towards more and better data disaggregated down to the level of individuals. In other words, we need to count people, not averages. The P20 Initiative does this by focusing on the people who live in the poorest 20% of the population globally: the P20.

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Latest data now available on DI’s Development Data Hub

The Development Data Hub is an open platform for sharing development and humanitarian data. The interactive data visualisations empower users to investigate financial resource-flow data alongside poverty, social and vulnerability indicators, and the analysis is also available to download. By harmonising and standardising the latest data for 2015 from a range of official sources – including OECD, IMF, the World Bank and others – the visualisations make it easy for both experienced and non-technical data users to compare information across countries and regions. This contextual evidence can contribute to effective planning and  by feeding into a better understanding of resource allocation.

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How prepared for disasters is Kenya?

Kenya is a nation prone to conflicts, slow-onset natural disasters such as droughts and famine, and rapid-onset disasters such as floods, land or mudslides, and disease outbreaks. Its topography makes areas of the country particularly susceptible to natural disasters, with arid and semi-arid lands covering about 89% of the total land mass – home to about 36% of the population. Subnationally there are areas that are regularly affected by droughts, resulting in food insecurity, high levels of malnutrition-related illnesses and deaths, and disruption of livelihoods. Other areas with poor surface water drainage are prone to flooding, resulting in loss of life and property, and outbreaks of waterborne human and animal diseases such as cholera and Rift Valley fever. It is vital that Kenya is prepared to face these challenges to minimise the impact of disasters on people and livelihoods.

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Aid spending by Development Assistance Committee (DAC) donors in 2016

Key findings Total net ODA from DAC donors in 2016 was US$142.62 billion (US$143.33 billion in constant 2015 prices), up 8.9% on 2015 figures.[1] Both total ODA and ODA net of refugee-hosting costs increased. Total ODA net of refugee-hosting costs reached US$127.21 billion in 2016 (US$127.89 billion in constant 2015 prices), an increase of 7.1% from 2015. The proportion of total ODA reported by DAC donors for refugee-hosting costs increased by 27.5%, reaching US$15.41 billion (US$15.44 billion in constant 2015 prices). The majority of donors saw an increase in their reported ODA from 2015 to 2016, some quite significantly; however, some key donors saw a decrease. Six countries met the 0.7% gross national income (GNI) target.

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Development Initiatives announced as new host for the 2017 Global Nutrition Report

DI has played a key role in the Global Nutrition Report in previous years, with Strategic Adviser Judith Randel sitting on the report’s Independent Expert Group. DI has also contributed data analysis on nutrition financing to the report. Harpinder Collacott, Executive Director at Development Initiatives, said: “We are delighted to host this year’s Global Nutrition Report. It’s a flagship publication that has put nutrition on the global agenda and as a result has immense credibility across the world.” The Global Nutrition Report documents progress on commitments made on the global stage, and recommends actions to accelerate that progress.

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Workshops: Working together to improve humanitarian transparency

We are hosting two consultation workshops in New York and Washington DC to bring together humanitarian data publishers and users to explore the rationale, use and benefits of IATI Standard. New York Date Wednesday 26 April 2017 Time 10.30−15.00 EST Location UNDP, 304 East 45th Street, FF1507, New York, NY 10017 Washington DC Date Thursday 27 April 2017 Time 08.30−13.00 EST Location OpenGov Hub, 1110 Vermont Avenue NW, Suite 500, Washington, DC 20005 About Transparency is a fundamental part of improving the efficiency, effectiveness and accountability of crisis prevention and response. The commitment by Grand Bargain signatory organisations to publish timely, transparent, harmonised and open high-quality data on humanitarian financing by May 2018 – using the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) as the basis for a common standard – sets a clear direction for improving humanitarian data for better accountability, decision-making and learning. The workshops will bring together humanitarian data publishers and users to explore the rationale, use and benefits of IATI Standard and how it can be further enriched to meet and monitor the needs of the humanitarian community. They will address questions such as: What types of data and information on humanitarian funding and activities are needed

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Insights into Nepal’s emerging data revolution

We’ve been working with local partners to engage non-state actors and government on this agenda, in particular through our support to the Open Nepal initiative. Alongside this, DI has supported local partners with funding and expertise on various technical, research and engagement efforts. Our focus has been to support the development of the information ecosystem needed to enable data-informed decision-making and accountability. This background paper shares some of our insights on Nepal’s emerging data revolution: The context for Nepal’s data revolution – presenting the complex environment surrounding interventions aimed at improving the production, sharing and use of data The development data ecosystem – including the role of government, civil society, private sector and development partners, plus key actors and initiatives within these groups The state of production, sharing and data use in Nepal – including the important milestones reached Future directions for Nepal’s data revolution – focusing on the role of the vibrant community of data enthusiasts in Nepal.

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What are the principles of joined-up data?

At the Friday Seminar that preceded this year’s UN Statistical Commission, Open Data Watch’s Eric Swanson asked me a challenging yet pertinent question following my presentation to the plenary. He asked: “The definition and principles of ‘open data’ are quite clear and simple but the principles of joined-up data are less clear. Can you enunciate five principles of joined-up data that could serve as a practical guide for others?” This is a question that we at the Joined-Up Data Standards (JUDS) project have been beginning to answer through our discussion papers, blogs and consultation paper. That said, Eric touched on a real gap in terms of concrete guidance when it comes to a commonly recognised list of principles for interoperability – the ability to access and process data from multiple sources without losing meaning, and integrate them for mapping, visualisation, and other forms of analysis – at a global level.

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Final ODA data for 2015

This report presents Development Initiatives’ initial analysis of that data, including: Comparison to preliminary ODA data Regional distribution of ODA Main recipient countries Trends in ODA to least developed countries (LDCs) The composition of ODA, including levels of loans, debt relief and refugee costs Key findings: There is no significant change in total ODA levels reported in the final 2015 data compared with the preliminary figures. Total ODA reached a new peak in 2015 despite a significant fall in disbursements from the United States (US). Sub-Saharan Africa remains the region that received the greatest amount of ODA; however, ODA disbursements with no specified recipient increased significantly. Afghanistan is still the largest ODA recipient despite several years of falling ODA receipts. Other countries in South and Central Asia (e.g.

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Nepal’s emerging data revolution for sustainable development

At a national level these changes are unfolding differently, according to particular local contexts – for example those involving multiple stakeholders with diverse interests, and comprising different initiatives and milestones according to local priorities, challenges and opportunities. Since 2011 we have worked in collaboration with various partners to improve the production, sharing and use of data for sustainable development in Nepal. In our background paper Nepal’s emerging data revolution, we share insights into the context in which the data revolution is materialising alongside key milestones and stakeholders involved. In Nepal, while there is still a long way to go before access and use of development data are widespread, interest in the role of data in development planning, monitoring, decision-making, governance and accountability is growing, and important advances have been made over the past five years. Nepal’s nascent and dynamic community of data enthusiasts has played an important role in this progress, supporting advancements in digital data collection, the opening of official datasets, and the development of data-sharing and e-governance platforms.

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Data to leave no one behind: Development Initiatives launches inaugural P20 Initiative baseline…

The report comes from DI’s P20 Initiative, which aims to track the progress of the poorest 20% of people globally across three bellwether indicators: income, nutrition and civil registration. In so doing it provides a simple assessment of whether or not the people in the P20 are benefiting from global progress. Crucially, the baseline report demonstrates the need for a new mindset and approach to understanding and measuring progress of people out of poverty if we are to achieve the ambitions of Agenda 2030. Harpinder Collacott, Executive Director at Development Initiatives, said: “To ensure everyone benefits from growth and development, we must track the progress of everyone.

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Analysis of Kenya’s budget 2017/18: What’s in it for the poorest people?

In this report we examine aspects of Kenya’s 2017/18 budget that relate to the redistribution of national resources or to budgetary allocation to sectors with programmes that target poor and vulnerable groups.  Key findings The Government of Kenya plans to spend of Ksh 2.29 trillion (27.6% of GDP) in the the coming financial year Development expenditure will amount to 27.9% of the total budget – less than the minimum 30% threshold provided by the Public Finance Management Act 2012 The government aims to raise Ksh 1.71 trillion (20.6% of GDP) through collection of ordinary revenue and appropriation-in-aid There will be mounting pressure on the domestic market in the 2017/18 financial year, as the government plans to finance 60.7% of the fiscal deficit and fund 58.7% of development expenditure using domestic sources The government plans to increase net domestic borrowing by 12.4% High debt repayment plans between 2017/18 and 2018/19 are likely to have an adverse impact on poverty programmes – reducing funds for services and infrastructure. Almost all of the programmes favouring poor and vulnerable groups that are assessed in the report have been allocated more resources than they were in previous financial years. However, there is a financing gap between actual allocations and target resource requirements (as indicated in the various sector medium-term expenditure frameworks). Deficits are found in allocations to health insurance for the elderly and disabled persons programme; school health, nutrition and meals; and the National Social Safety Net programme.

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P20 Initiative: Baseline report

In 2015, world leaders agreed the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (Agenda 2030). Its goal is to end poverty in all its forms everywhere, with a specific target to eradicate extreme poverty by 2030 and a commitment to leave no one behind. Achieving these ambitions will be much harder than meeting the Millennium Development Goals. It will require a different mindset, and new ways of measuring and monitoring progress.

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Implementing and monitoring the Grand Bargain commitment on transparency

At the World Humanitarian Summit in May 2016, Grand Bargain signatory organisations agreed to work towards greater transparency by identifying and implementing a shared open data standard and common digital platform to enhance transparency and decision-making. As a first step they committed to publishing timely, transparent, harmonised and open high-quality data on humanitarian funding and activities within two years of the Summit and identified the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) as the basis for a common standard. Development Initiatives is working with the Grand Bargain transparency workstream to improve humanitarian transparency and take forward the Grand Bargain commitment on transparency. Through this paper we are consulting on proposals to: Improve the IATI Standard to ensure that it continues to meet the needs of the humanitarian community. Develop a framework and methodology to support Grand Bargain signatories and the wider humanitarian community in monitoring progress against the transparency commitment.

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