Policy – Data Integration Workshop

UNESCAP in collaboration with Samoa Bureau of Statistics and Ministry of Finance hosted a 5 day workshop from 3-7th September 2018. This workshop was held at the DBS Conference Room and was a follow-on workshop from the previous one that was held in June of 2018 where Samoa undertook the first of two-workshop series aimed at applying a generic tool (EPIC) to seven pre-selected sector plans, to test its applicability and commence work on identifying all key data requirements from these seven sectors, as indicated in their existing planning documents.

The ultimate aim of policy-data integration tool, EPIC, is to enable the analyst to understand statistical needs for monitoring policy issues regarding social, economic, environmental and institutional core concepts outlined in a given policy, inclusive of all beneficiary target groups. This objective is achieved through developing a National Sustainable Development Indicator (NSDI) framework to benchmark actions and outcomes related to these concepts. The NSDI is the result of closely reviewing national planning and policy documents and other existing relevant national indicator sets, to identify appropriate indicators to track progress, which are then mapped against regional and global frameworks such as the SDGs. As a result of applying EPIC, analysts will be able to identify current demands and lack of demands for data as well as opportunities for further enhancement of linkages between policy and data across different policy domains. The application of EPIC also provides necessary information to both policy makers and data producers to further analyse gaps in policy and data.

The objectives of the workshop are as follows:

  • Applying the generic tool in detail to the remaining seven sector plans, to commence work on identifying all key data requirements from these sectors, as indicated in their existing planning documents
  • Deliberate on most appropriate way forward for Samoa to fully adopt the generic tool, clearly outlining all data requirements Samoa wishes to meet for national monitoring and regional/global reporting.

The workshop was officially opened by the Minister of Samoa Bureau of Statistics, Hon. Sala Fata Pinati. He welcomed the participants by providing the keynote address and for each sector to contribute during discussions. The seven (7) Sectors that participated were Environment, Water and Sanitation, Energy, Education, Transport, Communications and Finance Sector. Each sector coordinator was invited to present on the current status of their respective sector on the Sector Plans that are currently being implemented.

Representatives from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment included Ms. Ruth Ueselani (Water and Sanitation Sector Coordinator) Perise Kerslake, Mrs. Frances Reupena, (Environment Sector Coordinator), Olioli Faletoese and Vitolina Taupau from the Water Resources Division. Ms Ueselani and Mrs Reupena both provided a brief overview of the Water and Sanitation Sector and Environment Sector and the alignment of the current Water for Life Sector Plan 2016-2020 and NESP with national plans such as SDS, regional plans such as Samoa Pathway and the global plans such as Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The workshop ended was officially closed by the Chief Executive Officer of the Ministry of Finance, Afioga Tupaimatuna Iulai Lavea.

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