Ghana is on the rise. Exports increased significantly in 2018 (7.5% year on year), oil receipts have shot up and last year the country recorded a trade surplus of USD 1.7 billion dollars. As the country experiences this development, the government has been a vocal supporter of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), with President Akufo Addo serving as one of two United Nations SDG Advocates along with Norway’s Prime Minister Erna Sollberg.
This public commitment to sustainable development is underpinned by a deep focus on improving data to drive progress, direct resources, testing and scaling innovative approaches to community health care, agriculture, education, and climate resilience. With a population of almost 30 million people and a median age of just 20 years old, a liberal media, and a thriving telecommunications industry, Ghana has great prospects for ‘leapfrog’ advancements in tech and data.
The Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data supports partners at the national and sub-national levels in Ghana to develop and implement whole-of-government, multi-stakeholder data roadmaps for sustainable development.
Together, the Global Partnership and Ghana Statistical Service hosted a press fellowship to Ghana, bringing journalists to learn about foundational and innovative data for development in the country.
The government of Ghana announced at the High-Level Meeting on Data for Development in Africa in June 2017 that it will address the plight of unregistered children with a national ID card roll-out. The ID card will facilitate access to healthcare, education, and employment, among other things. Current estimates are that about 40 percent of births and 70 percent of deaths go unregistered. A birth certificate will be required to receive the national ID card, so Ghana expects to enroll millions of additional children and adults in coming months. Significant life events will be captured via the system and this new trove of data will be used to provide better public services to Ghanaians and will also be a rich source of data for statistical purposes. Ghana is also exploring use of anonymized telco data for mapping and planning for internal economic migration and access to social services.
There are a number of other data innovation activities currently supporting sustainable development in Ghana. See below for blogs, partner activities, initiatives, and resources related to sustainable development data in Ghana.