Drilling Down into the Data at RO Vienna

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 Nov 27, 2018

On 21 and 22 of November the Europe Regional Information Management Working Group held a technical workshop in Vienna focused on inter-agency coordination and collaboration in data management activities between IOM, UNHCR and UNICEF. The workshop provided a platform for common planning of data management activities and support to data collection and data analysis practices, as well as identifing areas for future collaboration.

Over 30 staff members from Regional Offices and participating countries (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Greece, Italy, Serbia, Spain, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Turkey) attended, and took part in animated discussions on data related issues, ranging from existing or ongoing data collection, data analysis and data gaps, and explored the needs and possibilities for joint data products.

The importance of a more comprehensive, longitudinal and route-based approach to data collection and analysis along the Mediterranean routes was central to discussions throughout the workshop. Achieving information management by firstly identifying what data is present and how it is being utilized set the groundwork for group discussions. "Participants explained current data collection and analysis practices in their respective countries and then identified data gaps, limitations and challenges. In the process, the role of the Regional Offices and their capacity to provide support was clarified, and increased transparency through pragmatic and practical approaches was recognized as key to future discussions", noted workshop organizer Ivona Zakoska-Todorovska from IOM's Vienna Regional Office

The outcomes of the workshop highlight the importance of scaling up inter-agency approaches to improve collaboration and harmonization of data collection and data analysis practices, and in doing so, enhancing the credibility of data. Participants noted their “improved understanding of the approach and plans of the Regional Offices regarding data management” as well as the benefits of “meeting colleagues from other agencies and acquiring a better understanding of their methodologies and workflows.” The potential for future collaboration with regards to more harmonized methodologies and data products was elucidated at country level, and areas for regional support, such as stronger advocacy and visibility were defined. The benefits of regular coordination meetings on data management underscored the workshop’s outcomes and reinforced the need to prioritize inter-agency cooperation for continuous improvement of data quality.

Watch Ivona's interveiw here https://youtu.be/QCd3e3WWWW8