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Data is a source of power. It can be exploited for private gain and used to limit freedom, or it can be deployed for the public good: as a resource for tackling social challenges, enabling collaboration, driving innovation, and improving accountability.

This first edition of the Global Data Barometer provides evidence and insight into the development of national and global data ecosystems: offering critical comparisons, analysis, and examples that can help drive top-down and bottom-up action to realize the opportunities of the ‘data revolution’[1,2], while navigating its risks. In this sense, the Barometer aims not only to produce assessments of countries based
on the state of their data, but also to assemble and support collective learning around what works, and about how to effectively intervene with and around data. In this report we summarize a number of key findings and highlight how the data gathered through the Barometer can be used in further exploratory work.

The Local Development Research Institute was Africa's Research Hub for the Global Data Barometer Project.

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