One buzz phrase the high-level panel’s report on the post-2015 objectives has added to the development lexicon is “data revolution”. Expect every report with numbers in it published over the next couple of years to be sold as part of this so-called revolution.
But as with all big new ideas, especially revolutions, the appropriate response is one of optimism balanced with a dose of caution. The history of development is littered with big ideas that have failed to live up to their billing.
Will better data really lead to better policies? On the one hand, it is so obvious as to be hardly worth stating that improved evidence and information should lead to better policymaking. Good data can help progressive leaders and civil servants make their case and implement better policies. And, ideally, you need facts to know whether your policies are working – it is no good just having good intentions. more