The global lack of inclusive data is a critical development issue. We know that some of the world’s poorest and most marginalised people, including people with disabilities, are at risk of being left behind. Data on their lives is often either entirely missing, or the challenges they face are masked by national averages or programmatic data which does not consider specific population groups.
That’s why at Sightsavers we’re very proud to be one of the founding champions of the Inclusive Data Charter (IDC), which turns two years old this month. Launched in July 2018, it has helped to create a movement in support of inclusive and disaggregated data as we work towards the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Momentum is building; the IDC is currently made up of 19 champions from across governments, international organisations and civil society who are taking action to address the data gap.
The IDC takes a holistic approach to inclusive data, bringing together organisations from different sectors and levels of technical expertise to learn from each other. It is committed to building a global body of knowledge on best practice which is freely accessible to all.
Like all the champions, Sightsavers has developed its own IDC action plan which outlines our commitment to specific objectives. Over the past two years we have strengthened our work around the collection, analysis, use and sharing of inclusive data. We know that without robust data, it is not possible to adequately plan for and allocate the necessary resources to ensure that our programmes achieve their objectives. It also helps us to plan and monitor who we reach: good-quality, timely and comparable data, including development indicators that can be disaggregated by factors such as sex, age, disability and geography, helps to ensure that the decisions we take do not reinforce existing inequalities.