Unlocking the Potential: The Call for an International Decade of Data

Working Paper by Stefaan Verhulst : “The goal of this working paper is to reiterate the central importance of data – to Artificial Intelligence (AI) in particular, but more generally to the landscape of digital technology.

What follows serves as a clarion call to the global community to prioritize and advance data as the bedrock for social and economic development, especially for the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. It begins by recognizing the existence of significant remaining challenges related to data; encompassing issues of accessibility, distribution, divides, and asymmetries. In light of these challenges, and as we propel ourselves into an era increasingly dominated by AI and AI-related innovation, the paper argues that establishing a more robust foundation for the stewardship of data is critical; a foundation that, for instance, embodies inclusivity, self-determination, and responsibility.

Finally, the paper advocates for the creation of an International Decade of Data (IDD), an initiative aimed at solidifying this foundation globally and advancing our collective efforts towards data-driven progress.

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