Data Blog

In line with the recommendations of the UN Secretary-General's Report of the High-level Panel on Digital Cooperation, as well as the Secretary-General's Data Strategy, this blog aims to foster a multi-disciplinary exchange of ideas on the topic of data. In this space, data experts and data champions will share their experiences and perspectives on topics such as data strategy, literacy, policy, governance, open data, privacy, ethics, AI, and more. Through this exchange of ideas, OICT ultimately hopes to contribute to a diverse and inclusive data culture.

Thank you for visiting this space. Questions related to this blog can be sent to unite@un.org.

Recent Blog Posts

20 September 2021

By Dr. Ann Cavoukian, Executive Director of the Global Privacy & Security by Design Centre & Creator of the Privacy by Design Framework

In this Q&A, Dr. Ann Cavoukian, discusses why data privacy and strong data protection are critically important. Dr. Cavoukian argues that if we are to preserve free and open societies, we must preserve the privacy and security of our online communications.
 

13 August 2021

Steve MacFeely, Director of Data and Analytics, World Health Organization

What distinguishes revolution from evolution? What events or movements in the world of data have been sufficiently disruptive or transformational to deserve being called revolutionary? Although they might seem like abstract questions, when I hear everyone talking about a “Data Revolution”, they are the ones I find myself asking.

1 July 2021

Christina Goodness, Chief, Information Management Unit, UN Departments of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs and Peace Operations

One year and 15 minutes later, I stepped away from the nurse’s table. I waited to see if there would be any vaccine reaction. After a year of remote work and crisis response for COVID-19, I sat there and took a deep breath, listening to the clicking of keyboards as the medical staff recorded the data and murmured amongst themselves.

25 May 2021

By Kyoung-Soo Eom, Chief of Geospatial Information Section, Technology Operations Service, Operations Support Division, OICT

Since the establishment of the United Nations, cartography and geospatial information have been an important component of the Organization. In 1948, the Committee of Experts on Cartography sought to answer two questions:

  1. What should the United Nations do to stimulate and assist Member States in the development of the mapping sciences?
  2. What sort of cartographic service did the United Nations need to carry out this program, for its own operations, and in its relations with the specialized agencies?

12 April 2021

By Stefan Lemm, former Head, Military Operations Unit, OICT

Data Privacy and Protection is one of the key aspects of the Secretary-General’s Data Strategy. It is clear that protecting people from indiscriminate data collection is important because it might result in data misuse, for instance, by businesses. But a potentially more dangerous scenario would be that data collected in good faith ends up in the hands of ill-meaning actors who intend to intimidate or even threaten the victim's personal safety.