On January 24, 2024, the Local Development Research Institute (LDRI) in collaboration with the Kenya Editors Guild, organized a briefing for media editors on improving the data capacity of counties. The gathering aimed to share key findings from a data capacity study encompassing select counties in Kenya. Attendees included county staff, press club members, and Hon. Harriette Chiggai, The President’s Advisor Office Of The Women’s Rights And Gender Agency, who served as the guest speaker.
In a rapid data capacity assessment conducted by LDRI in August 2023, researchers engaged with staff from Kakamega, Murang’a, Tharaka Nithi, and Embu Counties. The assessment pinpointed challenges in data utilization, such as scattered data storage, limited analysis capacity, financial constraints, and the necessity for data standardization.
Muchiri Nyaggah, Executive Director of LDRI, emphasized the multifaceted nature of government and the need for comprehensive, disaggregated data to drive progress. In response to identified challenges, the County Statistics Bill marks a significant step forward, its legislation will be important in advocating for the establishment of dedicated County Statistics Units and county data focal points..
In addition Hon. Harriette Chiggai stressed the importance of gender mainstreaming in data at all stages, urging counties to adopt strategies to ensure that development initiatives address the needs of the entire population, including women and girls who remain underrepresented in data.
LDRI has made recommendations for county governments, emphasizing the need to ring fence of resources, develop partnerships for improving data storage, investing centralized data repositories, and prioritizing the development of data management guidelines for county governments. Ongoing data literacy programs and collaborations with educational institutions were also highlighted as being potentially catalytic for improved data capacity . Lastly, it was recommended that counties establish data capacity improvement roadmaps based on comprehensive assessments to better inform investments in gender data and data for development more broadly.
Access the briefing paper.