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7 Challenges, Opportunities Of Data Collaboratives In Helping To Achieve SDGs

Devex: Opinion: The promises — and challenges — of data collaboratives for the SDGs
Paula Hidalgo-Sanchis, manager at Pulse Lab Kampala, and Stefaan G. Verhulst, co-founder and chief research and development officer of The GovLab at New York University

“As the road to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals becomes more complex and challenging, policymakers around the world need both new solutions and new ways to become more innovative. This includes better policy and program design based on evidence to solve problems at scale. The use of big data — the vast majority of which is collected, processed, and analyzed by the private sector — is key. … Research suggests that data collaboratives offer tremendous potential when implemented strategically under the appropriate policy and ethical frameworks. Nonetheless, this remains a nascent field, and we have summarized some of the barriers that continue to confront data collaboratives, with an eye toward ultimately proposing solutions to make them more effective, scalable, sustainable, and responsible. Here are seven challenges: 1. Lack of public awareness on the potential … 2. Absence of trust … 3. Private sector uncertainties … 4. Limited capacity … 5. Transaction costs … 6. Scaling challenges … 7. Limited community of practice and expertise…” (1/7).