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PRESS 2021: Dramatic increase in support to health-related statistics under COVID-19 while other sectors see decline. Overall funding to data and statistics likely to remain stagnant in 2020

Funding to frontier technologies is accelerating amidst declining system support. Within an increasingly fragmented funding landscape, this poses risks to long- term pandemic recovery.

The Partner Report on Support to Statistics (PRESS) published annually by the Partnership in Statistics for Development in the 21st Century (PARIS21) is the most comprehensive annual analysis of international support to data and statistics, identifying trends, needs and opportunities to scale up financing.

The 2021 edition is the first study to analyse the evolution of development data financing during the COVID- 19 pandemic and features a new section on funding to civil registration and vital statistics.

Explore the key messages below and download the report at paris21.org/press2021

1

Funding has been stagnant for nearly a decade, despite growing needs. Total global commitments to statistics in 2019 were equivalent to USD 647 million. Nowcasted support to statistics in 2020 is estimated at USD 624 million.

2

Between 2011 and 2019, international development finance to administrative data systems doubled, and funding to projects with gender data as the focus also rose. However, funding for system-wide reform shrunk by half.

3

Because of the pandemic, we have seen a sharp shift in funding to health - related data and statistics – from a 10% share to more than a third of all funding. At the same time, funding to other sectors such as social infrastructure and protection fell from 20% to 7%.

4

Investment in frontier technologies is soaring, with support to new data sources and methodologies such as machine learning and satellite imagery rising by 134% between 2015 and 2019.

5

As of May 2021, 4 in 10 national statistical offices (NSOs) reported that data collection costs had increased since the beginning of the pandemic, with 61% of NSOs in low-- and lower middle - income countries reporting the greatest challenges compared to only a third of NSOs in high- income countries.

6

Partnerships and coordination can help minimise fragmentation in the support landscape, thereby fostering financing to under- funded SDGs, countries, and statistical activities. Recent aligned initiatives include the Clearinghouse for Financing Development and World Bank’s Global Data Facility.

Download the report and data at paris21.org/press2021

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