Tourism statistics in Commonwealth and Independent States

Developing National Systems of Tourism Statistics: Challenges and Good Practices will be discussed at a workshop for CIS countries in Chisinau, Moldova from 29 June-2 July

The Workshop is organized by DESA’s Statistics Division in collaboration with the UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), the Interstate Statistical Committee of the CIS (CISSTAT) and National Bureau of Statistics of the Republic of Moldova and hosted by the National Bureau of Statistics of the Republic of Moldova.

The objective of the workshop is to assist countries in strengthening their statistical capacity in the area of tourism statistics by training them in the International Recommendations for Tourism Statistics 2008 adopted by the United Nations Statistical Commission at its 39th session in February 2008 as well as by providing advice on practical issues of the implementation.

The training will focus on both the conceptual issues and good practices in organizing and improving the national programmes of tourism statistics under various country specific circumstances. The workshop aims also to promote and facilitate the inter-agency cooperation to ensure that tourism statistics is compiled in an integrated and efficient way and the disseminated data serve the needs of national tourism agencies, national statistical offices and central banks in the best possible way.

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Reviewing recommendations of MDG data

Workshop on MDG Monitoring will be held in Tashkent, Uzbekistan from 29 June-2 July

The Workshop, which is organized by DESA’s Statistics Division in collaboration with the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), will bring together representatives from national statistical offices and line ministries to review recommendations for reporting of MDG data and to establish strategies for dealing with data discrepancies and data gaps at the national and international level, particularly for health related MDG indicators.

In addition, the workshop will provide participants with skills needed to improve the production and dissemination of MDG indicators.

Strengthening e-government programmes

Missions and meetings with Brunei, Portugal, Albania, Tunisia to support the 2010 United Nations e-Government Survey

Mission to Brunei on e-Government

At the International Conference on e-Government and Administration Simplification in Brunei Darussalam, 11-13 May, the results of the 2010 UN e-Government Survey attracted significant international interest. The impact of the Survey was evident as many of the participants referenced either the 2008 or the 2010 UN e-Government Survey. In particular, reference was made to the stages of e-government preparedness and the criteria used for the Survey. A number of countries also indicated that they use the Survey as a benchmarking tool as part of their e-government development programme.

The host country, Brunei Darussalam, noted with satisfaction that they jumped 19 places since the 2008 Survey and expressed an interest in sending a delegation to New York to meet with the Haiyan Qian and representatives of the e-Government Branch, Division for Public Administration & Development Management (DPADM), to learn more about the UN e-Government Survey.

Haiyan Qian was invited to give a presentation and to chair a panel at the conference by the OECD/Korea Policy Centre. She was also interviewed on the results of the 2010 UN e-Government Survey and invited by the Government of Brunei Darussalam to visit their centre on e-government.

Meeting with a Delegation of Portugal

In response to the results published in the UN e-Government Survey 2010, the Mission of Portugal requested a meeting to discuss the criteria used in the Survey to assess e-government preparedness. The delegation, consisting of Counsellor Manuel Silva Pereira of the Permanent Mission and Mr. Luis Goes Pinheiro, Chief of Staff of the State Office for Administrative Modernization in Lisbon, also took the opportunity to share the latest developments in the field of e-government in Portugal.

Some of these developments will be featured in DPADM’s knowledge base (PAKS – Public Administration Knowledge Space) and publications such as the Compendium on e-Government Innovative Practices. Noteworthy examples shared by Portugal include the recent law enacted by the Portuguese Government to promote inter-agency connectivity, the development of citizen-centric online services such as the citizen card, the e-little school for children, the e-procurement system, and toolkits to support public administration and e-government in post-conflict countries in lusophone Africa and in East Timor. Overall, it was a mutually beneficial meeting, in which the technical products of DPADM were positively highlighted by a Member State.

Advisory mission to Albania

The Government of Albania’s e-government strategy and implementation of the e-government programme was the subject of a mission to Albania. Discussions focused on how DESA could provide support towards strengthening Albania’s e-government capacity in key ministries and institutions.

DESA, through DPADM, presented a half-day workshop on the methodology of the UN e-Government Survey, the ranking as it pertains to Albania and the identification of strengths and challenges that exist in Albania, as well as DESA tools that could be used to provide support to the Government of Albania.

This led to enhanced awareness on the part of public officials about e-government issues to be tackled in a comprehensive manner and increased level of commitment for IT managers to become more e-government savvy and to create opportunities to increase citizen engagement through the use of blogs. Each IT Manager committed to developing his/her own blog.

In addition, a meeting with UNDP-Albania led to an agreement in principle to work together more closely in providing support to Albania. DESA was requested to develop a proposal to see how its expertise on e-government and public sector management could be used in the next Country Programme for Albania.

Advisory mission to Tunisia

The strengths and challenges of Tunisia in developing a way forward towards strengthening its e-government programme were the subject of a mission to Tunisia. This mission was undertaken within the framework of the UNDP project to support the Office of the Prime Minister.

As for the advisory mission to Albania, a half-day workshop was presented on the methodology of the UN e-Government Survey, the ranking as it pertains to Tunisia and the identification of strengths and challenges that exist in Tunisia, as well as DESA tools that could be used to provide support to the Government of Tunisia, with similar outcomes.

The mission also finalized the terms of reference of the UNDP project, for which DESA is the implementing agency, of both the international and national consultants that would be recruited to support local governance and enhance e-content and accessibility as highlighted in the project document.

During the mission, the UN e-government methodology was presented to the UNDP-Tunisia country team, which led to some fruitful discussions between UNDP and UNDESA, and strengthened the foundation of cooperation between the two organizations.

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