Volume 14, No.5 - May 2010

Trends and analysis

Improving environment statistics

Joint Task Force on Environmental Indicators will be held in Geneva from 3-4 May, jointly organized by the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) and DESA’s Statistics Division

The Joint Task Force on Environmental Indicators has been established to foster collaboration of national statistical offices and environmental ministries and agencies in the improvement of environment statistics. The meeting will review the Guidelines on the Application of Environmental Indicators in Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia.

The meeting will discuss the indicators revised on the basis of the conclusions of the first meeting and will consider further indicators for revision based on countries’ experience with their application. It will also look into the possibility to include new indicators to fill in gaps in the coverage of some of the priority subject areas.

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Third Parliamentary Forum on Shaping the Information Society

The forum will discuss ICT and the Global Economic Crisis: Current Situation and Future Perspectives in Geneva from 3-5 May

The event, co-organized by DESA, IPU and ITU through the Global Centre for ICT in Parliament will focus on key issues relevant to the crisis recovery such as the investments in high-speed Internet networks, e-government and competitiveness and social and economic costs of cybercrime. It will also discuss liberalization of telecommunication and ICT markets and promoting competition and national responses to regulation challenges.

The outcome is expected to support the Parliamentary Forum to better delineate the political role and responsibilities of parliaments in their legislative and oversight functions on the above issues, to identify good parliamentary practices and to draw recommendations for action by legislatures.

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Improving collection and dissemination of statistical data

Conference on Data Quality for International Organizations will be held in Helsinki from 6-7 May

The Conference will be held immediately after the Q2010 European Conference on Quality in Official Statistics (Helsinki, 4-6 May 2010) under the auspices of the Committee for the Coordination of Statistical Activities (CCSA). Eurostat and DESA’s Statistics Division are organizing this fourth CCSA conference dedicated entirely to quality issues, which will be hosted by Statistics Finland.

The purpose of the conference is to provide statistical experts from international or supra-national organizations with a forum to discuss specific data quality issues related to their work and exchange experiences regarding the various quality mechanisms developed for improving the collection and dissemination of data.

The main focus of this year’s conference will be on how international support for the development of national quality assurance frameworks can be provided, therefore, the discussions will also reflect upon the programme review on National Quality Assurance Frameworks carried out by Statistics Canada for the forty-first session of the Statistical Commission (see document E/CN.3/2010/2).

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Challenges in implementing the Mauritius Strategy

Inter-regional Meeting on the Mauritius Strategy +5 Review will be held in New York on 8 May

The purpose of the meeting is to provide a forum for the Small Island Developing States (SIDS) to evaluate in the Pacific, AIMS and Caribbean regions national and regional challenges in implementing the Mauritius Strategy.

The meeting will also discuss common priorities for action and finalize a global synthesis report for consideration by CSD-18, acting as the preparatory committee for the high-level review of the Mauritius Strategy in September 2010. Major groups are invited to nominate representatives to the Inter-regional Meeting.

The review meetings held in the Pacific, AIMS and Caribbean regions produced three regional synthesis reports. These regional reports are based on National Assessment Reports by SIDS, as well as inputs from UN Agencies, intergovernmental organizations, non-SIDS countries and major groups.

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Coordinating geographic information management

Second Preparatory Meeting of the Proposed United Nations Committee on Global Geographic Information Management will be organized by DESA’s Statistics Division in collaboration with the UN Cartographic Section in New York on 10-11 May

The purpose of the meeting is to discuss and initiate the preparation of a report, for the approval of ECOSOC, on global coordination of geographic information management, including the consideration of a possible creation of a United Nations global forum for the exchange of information among countries and other interested parties.

The meeting will also focus on sharing best practices in legal and policy instruments, institutional management models, technical solutions and standards, interoperability of systems and data, and sharing mechanisms that guarantee that geographic information and services are easily and timely accessible.

Bringing together official representatives from member countries as well as representatives from relevant professional organizations, the meeting will also offer the possibility to the participants to discuss the terms of reference and the modalities of work for the global forum and the Committee of Experts.

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Evaluating censuses for the 2010 World Programme

Workshop on the 2010 World Programme on Population and Housing Censuses: Census Evaluation and post Enumeration Surveys, for Countries in the ESCAP Regions will be held in Bangkok from 10-14 May

DESA’s Statistics Division, in collaboration with UNESCAP, is organizing a Regional Workshop for countries in the region on census evaluation in the context of the 2010 World Programme for Population and Housing Censuses.

The purpose of the workshop is to present an overview of the various methods of evaluating censuses with a focus on the post enumeration survey (PES) methodology. More specifically, the workshop will cover elements of the PES with regard to planning and implementation, frames and sample design as well as methodologies for evaluating content and coverage errors. It will also cover matching procedures, imputation of missing values and tabulation and dual system of estimation.

The workshop will also offer the possibility to the participants to present and discuss the experience of their countries on different aspects of census evaluation and the post enumeration survey.

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Supporting the World Summit on Information Society

Internet Governance Forum, Multistakeholder Advisory Group and WSIS meetings will be held in Geneva from 10-14 May

IGF Planning Meeting

A planning meeting of the Internet Governance Forum will take place from 10-11 May, preparing the programme of the fifth annual IGF Meeting to be held in Vilnius Lithuania on 14-17 September 2010.

Open to all interested stakeholders, the meeting will focus on the selection of workshops and their relationship with the main sessions. More than 80 workshop proposals have been submitted to the IGF Secretariat.

Meeting of the Multistakeholder Advisory Group (MAG)

The main task of this meeting on 12 May is to review the MAG’s functioning and to make proposals for improvements in view of a possible renewal of its mandate.

WSIS Forum 2010

On 12 May, DESA will convene the Fifth Facilitation Meeting on Implementing the Outcomes of the World Summit on the Information Society. Participants will exchange information and discuss progress in implementing 3 of the 11 WSIS Action Lines:

  • Action Line C1. The role of public governance authorities and all stakeholders in the promotion of ICT for development;
  • Action Line C7. ICT Applications – eGovernment; and,
  • Action Line C11. International and regional cooperation

The purpose of the Fifth Facilitation Meeting, which is open to all stakeholders from the public and private sectors, civil society, and international organizations, is to inform participants of the meetings on the respective sub group’s activities and to provide a platform to exchange information and experiences.

The meeting will also identify the proprietary areas for implementation within the Action Lines and create synergies among different stakeholders for more effective knowledge sharing and collaboration in order to ensure the implementation of WSIS at the international, regional and national levels.

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Furthering the partnership between DESA and OECD in e-Government

In recognition of the United Nations E-government Survey, DPADM/DESA was invited by OECD to participate in the OECD Workshop on E-Government Indicators that took place on 29-30 March at the OECD Headquarters in Paris

The United Nations E-Government Index is the official OECD indicator for global e-government readiness in the OECD publication Government at a Glance 2009. The workshop deliberations resulted in support for the development of a framework for the second stage e-government indicators that support policy-making, especially back-office indicators, performance (outcomes and outputs) indicators, and economically-oriented indicators.

The participants highlighted the need to fine-tune the framework and the methodology, and to adopt a commonly agreed upon terminology. Subsequent to the meeting, DESA through DPADM accepted an invitation by OECD to become a Member of the newly established virtual taskforce of e-government indicators specialists.

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