Joined-up Data Standards

This project ran from August 2015 to December 2017. The project explored ways of linking different sources and types of data together – or making them interoperable. This is critical in order to help generate the fullest picture possible on development processes.

Development Initiatives and Publish What You Fund worked together on this project and focussed on two things – technical solutions and political will. Publish What You Fund led the advocacy and engagement components of the project. This culminated in the formation of an international multi-stakeholder Collaborative on SDG Data Interoperability, jointly convened by the United Nations Statistics Division and the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data.

The final project paper ‘The frontiers of data interoperability for sustainable development’ contained five principles considered essential for interoperable data:

  • Using and re-using existing standards
  • Not overlooking metadata
  • Using common classifications wherever possible
  • Publishing data in machine-readable formats
  • Ensuring that standards are user-driven.