Advancing data governance for development in Africa: strengthening integration and capacity in the provision of government digital services
As African governments turn to digital systems to provide services to their citizens, new data challenges and opportunities arise. With the recent publication of the African Union Data Policy Framework in 2022, an important window has opened to engage decisionmakers on a series of activities to support rights-preserving data ecosystems and governance in African countries and to advance regional integration and alignment. As articulated in the Framework, a number of policy interventions and capacity-building efforts are required to strengthen data governance in Africa across all sectors, including government digital services. These interventions and efforts need to be supported by robust research to better understand what and whose rights are at risk, especially for marginalized groups, as well as capacity gaps and challenges facing full and proper implementation of existing and emerging data governance frameworks.
Ultimately, this project will seek to strengthen the governance and use of data within African government digital services, with a view to incorporating the views of marginalized groups, including women, migrants, asylum seekers and refugees. It will conduct rigorous research on the rights-related data risks and governance requirements in the provision of government digital services, develop a series of capacity-building tools and curricula for stakeholders in the digital services sector, and lead community-responsive engagements to advance citizens’ participation in the governance of digital services data. It is part of the last round of project approvals of the Data for Development Network (D4D), which was established over 2021 and 2022.