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The report

The World Bank’s latest World Development Report 2021: Data for Better Lives focuses on how data can improve the lives of poor people and advance development objectives.

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You can download the whole report or just the overview, main messages or individual chapters separately.

World Development Report 2021

Part 1. Advancing development objectives through data

Chapter 1. Harnessing the value of data for the poor

Chapter 2. Data as a force for public good

Chapter 3. Data as a resource for the private sector

Chapter 4. Creative reuses of data for greater value

Part 2. Aligning data governance with the social contract

Chapter 5. Data infrastructure policy: Ensuring equitable access for poor people and poor countries

Chapter 6. Data policies, laws, and regulations: Creating a trust environment

Chapter 7. Creating value in the data economy: The role of competition, trade, and tax policy

Chapter 8. Institutions for data governance: Building trust through collective action

Part 3. Moving toward an integrated national data system

Chapter 9. Creating an integrated national data system

Data and analysis

Download and explore the data behind the WDR 2021.

externalStatistical Performance Indicators (SPI)The indicators measure statistical performance across 171 countries. They are grouped into five dimensions, which capture whether foundations such as financing, skills, and governance needed for a strong statistical system are in place. Under each dimension is a set of indicators to measure performance providing a time series extending at least from 2016 to 2019 in all cases, with some indicators going back to 2004.externalGlobal Data Regulation SurveyThe Global Data Regulation diagnostic is a comprehensive assessment of laws and regulations on data governance. It covers both the enabler and safeguard regulatory practices in 80 countries. The questionnaire comprises 37 questions designed to determine if a country has adopted good regulatory practice on data governance.externalData Governance IndicatorsThe DGI dataset is a subset of the Digital Government/GovTech Systems and Services (DGSS) dataset. The indicators are categorized based on WDR2021 report’s four pillars of data governance framework (infrastructure, laws & regulations, policies, and institutions). They aim to inform a maturity model (MM) approach to data governance and contain both qualitative and quantitative metrics to monitor the state of the data governance practices within the public sector.externalThe World Development Report 2021 (WDR2021) Dataset CollectionThis data catalog collection provides access to all available source data and R/STATA replication files (for specific figures) necessary to create the figures and maps that appear in the report.

Background research

The World Bank working papers on WDR 2021 topics.

externalMeasuring the Statistical Performance of Countries: An Overview of Updates to the World Bank Statistical Capacity IndexHai-Anh H. Dang, John Pullinger, Umar Serajuddin, and Brian StacyThe World Bank’s Statistical Capacity Index (SCI) has been widely employed to measure country statistical capacity since its inception two decades ago. We build on the existing advantages of the SCI, both conceptually and empirically, to offer new Statistical Performance Indicators and a new Index (SPI) that can better measure a country’s statistical performance.externalPolicy Choices Can Help Keep 4G and 5G Universal Broadband AffordableEdward J Oughton, Niccolo Comini, Vivien Foster, and Jim W. Hall.The United Nations Broadband Commission has committed the international community to accelerate universal broadband, but the costs of meeting these objectives in the context of rapid technological change are not well understood. This paper compares the global cost-effectiveness of different infrastructure strategies for the developing world to achieve universal 4G or 5G mobile broadband.externalMobile Internet Adoption in West AfricaCarlos Rodriguez Castelan, Rogelio Granguillhome Ochoa, Samantha Lach, and Takaaki MasakiMobile broadband internet is the main technology through which individuals access the internet in developing countries. To understand the barriers to broadband adoption, this paper exploits data from harmonized household expenditure surveys for 2018/19 for seven countries in West Africa—a subregion with one of the lowest levels of mobile internet penetration in the world—to identify the main factors that limit mobile broadband internet adoption.