This paper is from Session 1B: Evidence-based policy making
Full topic list
which comes under Topic 1: Data and context in statistics education: towards an evidence-based society

(Tuesday 13th, 16:30-18:00)

The evidence gap and its impact on public policy and decision-making in developing countries



It is now recognized that statistics are no longer just a technical issue but also a development issue. They constitute an essential element in improving the ability of government to develop appropriate policies, manage the economic and social development processes, monitor improvements in the living standards of the people and report back this progress to the public. Statistics are also needed by organizations other than governments and the public. The new focus on Managing for Development Results in developing countries has resulted in unprecedented latent demand for data. This has put pressure on already fragile, under-resourced and under-performing national statistical systems, leading to an evidence gap. As a result, policy-making in some countries can be purely subjective or ideological and the monitoring of policy outcomes can be constrained. The nature of the evidence gap is explored and a case is made for bridging this gap. The paper presents some requirements for this to happen.