DataRepública: a tool for measuring and monitoring sustainable development

August, 2021

Margarita Vaca
Researcher, Data for Development Unit

Sustainable development is a challenging concept that highlights the importance of achieving a balance between the environmental, economic and social dimensions to ensure that both present and future generations can meet their needs (see Sustainable Development: Thinking holistically, creating together).

Since its first mention in the 1987 Brundtland Report, sustainable development has become the roadmap for promoting and building more equitable, just and inclusive societies that strive to close inequality gaps and thus encourage holistic development in all areas, from the interconnection, under a common objective, of its three dimensions, to the global call for the active participation of all stakeholders in the implementation of global agendas and national development plans.

In this context, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development adopted this perspective as a global commitment that will guide the efforts, measures and actions of all countries by 2030, with the aim of building a robust governance reflected in the well-being and capabilities of citizens. The 2030 Agenda also highlighted the need to make sustainable development, its achievements and challenges visible through indicators that would allow its progress to be monitored.

In this sense, DataRepública, Cepei's data lab for sustainable development, seeks to promote the use of data to measure the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Latin America and the Caribbean through its four components:

Conecta: Makes available to researchers, academics and governments, among other actors, a catalog of dataset sources associated with one or more SDGs, which allows to power the data ecosystem for sustainable development in seven Latin American countries. It seeks to facilitate data searching to produce reports, analysis and evidence-based evaluations.

Aprende: Builds and strengthens capacities in data analysis, processing, visualization and communication, to enable users in becoming trainers of trainers.

Publica: Encourages knowledge generation, through data-driven stories that make territorial and population group realities visible within the framework of achieving the SDGs.  It considers visuals as a key element to communicate a problem or situation in a practical and interactive way.

Analiza: provides data series aligned to the SDGs indicators for users to build customized visualizations that allow them to perform their own analysis.

DataRepública is well aware that sustainable development entails joining efforts in a coordinated manner with multiple actors both within and outside the data ecosystem. Therefore, this initiative works together with stakeholders from civil society, academia, the public sector, the private sector, among others, to strengthen and meet the objectives outlined in each of its components, in line with the promotion of the SDGs.