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Wednesday January 24, 2024

Ghana Statistical Service DataScience Team Wins Datathon

Edit Banner: Ghana Statistical Service DataScience Team Wins UN Datathon× Banner Name: Description:

2023 UN Datathon- Context and Description:

The 2023 UN Datathon is a global data science competition where participants were expected to develop innovative data-driven statistical applications, tools or models that combine geospatial data with other data sources to help advance the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals. 


Local Access to Information in Ghana: Localising SDG Indicators and Computing the Novel Access to Information Index


The 2023 UN Datathon focused on six broad areas:

  • Food security
  • Climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution
  • Energy Access and Affordability
  • Digital Connectivity
  • Education
  • Jobs and Social protection


In the pursuit of achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), two essential challenges emerge –limited information at local levels and where information exist, access to it is limited. Addressing these issues becomes paramount as we inquire into the accessibility of data regarding the local performance of SDG goals by local policy makers and opinion leaders. Our examination of this matter prompts two critical questions: first, do key stakeholders have access to information on the local performance of SDG goals? Secondly, even when localized data is available, can it be easily accessed from most locations?

Regrettably, the general response to these enquiries in most developing countries is a resounding "No." The landscape of local information access, particularly in specific districts, remains constrained. This deficiency in accessibility poses a significant obstacle to informed decision-making and targeted interventions required for sustainable development. As we navigate these challenges, it becomes evident that a transformative and innovative approach is imperative for monitoring and enhancing local access to information. After all, information that is not readily accessible might just as well not exist, hindering the progress towards achieving the ambitious SDGs by 2030. This pressing need underscores the importance of devising novel solutions to address the existing information gaps and foster a more inclusive and informed approach to local development initiatives.

Our Solution:

Based on the problems outlined we therefore provide three main solutions using Ghana as a case:

  • Localised SDG indicators using both census data and non-traditional data sources.
  • The novel Access to Information Index (A.I.I)
  • An interactive tool to make the A.I.I adjustable and adaptable.

Details of the solution can be found in the link below: 

Details of the solution can be found in the link below:

The link to the youtube video on our solution is found below

Information on the award can be found on UN website via the link below