Global Pulse Scoping Mission concludes workshop

The Global Pulse Lab scoping mission, led by the Head of the Global Pulse Lab in Jakarta Derval Usher and Data Scientist Dharani Burra, was completed yesterday with local stakeholders and partners to obtain feedback and their support for the establishment of the Lab in Samoa. 

An initiative of the United Nations on Big Data, the Global Pulse Labs works to promote awareness of the opportunities Big Data presents for sustainable development and humanitarian action, forge public-private data sharing partnerships, generate high-impact analytical tools and approaches through its network of Pulse Labs, and drive broad adoption of useful innovations across the UN System.

According to a statement from the U.N. Samoan headquarters, Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi had requested for the establishment of the lab. 

It said Tuilaepa wanted a dedicated lab in Samoa providing data innovation services relevant to the needs of the country and the Pacific, in support of their national commitments towards the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals.

The statement added that Tuilaepa believes a Pulse Lab in Samoa is crucial and will support the relevant entities with knowledge and tools for near real time data analysis, programme monitoring, partnerships on data innovation, and capacity development for stakeholders to track progress towards the SDG in the Pacific region.

 “Like other countries of the world, the Pacific region including Samoa lacks critical data for national development policymaking. Many governments still do not have access to adequate data on their entire populations and other development sectors. 

“While there is data being collected what is lacking is sound data analysis and accessing and making good use of data are also considered as challenges.

“However, the Pacific region produces data that can be tapped into to provide real-time sensing of situations on the ground and be used to predict humanitarian crises to in order to come up with measures to protect vulnerable communities.”

 According to the U.N. statement, Samoa also is an ideal location for the 4th UN Global Pulse lab considering significant progress it has made in enhancing connectivity through submarine cables creating the pathway for digital transformation envisioning improved service delivery and quality of life for its people.

“While the Global Pulse Lab is a UN initiative, the proposed Pulse Lab in Samoa foresees an opportunity for multilateral and regional collaborations. 

“The U.N. will work closely with the S.P.C. (Secretariat of the Pacific Community) and the S.P.R.E.P. (South Pacific Regional Environment Programme) to ensure that the Pacific is served with near real time data analysis for better policy formulations and effective implementation of national development priorities. 

“The international development partners in Samoa and the relevant government ministries, academic institutions and the private sector, in the understanding that data is part their daily work and businesses are all fully supportive of this initiative.

Tuilaepa’s request is fully supported by the United Nations Deputy Secretary General (D.S.G.) Amina Mohammed and the U.N. Resident Coordinators Simona Marinescu. 

Tuilaepa will meet the UN D.S.G. Ms. Mohammed when in New York at the end of this week, for the United Nations General Assembly, where he will present the findings from the Pulse Lab in Samoa scoping mission and to discuss the next move for this great initiative. 

The Pulse Lab in Samoa will be the 4th Lab with other Pulse Labs in Jakarta Indonesia, Kampala Uganda and the headquarters in New York.

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