The Bank Group should take a stronger lead in strengthening mechanisms for quality and transparency on poverty data, motivate country compliance, and regularly disseminate data.
The Bank plays a leadership role in poverty data standards, support for data collection, and data dissemination. Unlike the IMF, the absence of the mandate to require the collection and dissemination of standardized data on household income and poverty constrains the Bank's ability to achieve the twin goals.
WB: Agrees. The WBG is engaged in strengthening data quality and transparency at various levels. Within countries, the WBG staff provide technical assistance and capacity building and promote open data policies. There are on-going efforts to curate, archive and vet data quality, its dissemination and enhanced availability.
The WB is exploring mechanismsto create standards on data access, quality and timeliness that countries can voluntarily adhere to.
The Bank has been in the forefront of establishing standard setting body for household surveys (a key source of data for poverty related measures), recently endorsed by the UN, that will improve common approaches and adherences to codes of conduct for survey activities undertaken in the Bank's partner countries.
Action 3a: Establishment of Household Survey Working Group (HSWG), reporting to the Development Data Directors (DDD) and Data Council.
Indicator: Working Group on Household Surveys established with representations from several GPS and CCSAs, meeting and reporting regularly to the DDD.
Baseline: No Working Group previously existed to coordinate household survey activities within the WB.
Target: Establishment of the HSWG.
Action 3b: Improvements in adopting best practice methodologies and procedures to conduct and disseminate household surveys being supported by the Bank.
Indicator:Number of countries conducting multi-topic surveys and disseminating the data in line with methodological standards endorsed by the HSWG and share the data as an anonymized public use data set within 12 months following data collection.
Baseline: Lack of integrated knowledge on how poverty data should be collected and disseminated.
Target: At least two thirds of the countries supported by the WB will adopt the methodological standards endorsed by the HSWG and make the micro-data available.
Action 3a: completed as of last year. Action 3b: IEG takes note that 38 surveys supported by the TFSCB are being produced and 26 reviewed to ensure that they met quality standards. Tools are in place that define what high methodological standards are and what are best practices in data collection, especially for poverty measurement (including a newly introduced scorecard). As many surveys are still in the field, IEG understands that it is still too early to track how many surveys are (will be) made publicly available. IEG notes that this action could be jeopardized by uncertainties around continuous funding for the TFSCB.
Activities under 3A: As reported in 2016, the Household Survey Working Group, now reporting to the Development Data Council (DDC), was established and continues to meet approximately bimonthly. The Household Survey Working Group remains the central hub for coordination of household survey activities within the WBG. As part of the HSWG work program, the HSWG members prepared a Protocol for Data Collection, Quality Assurance and Standard Setting as well as a FY17-19 Methodological Research Work Program for Improving the Quality and Relevance of Multi-Purpose Household Surveys.
Activities under 3B: Through funding from the Trust Fund for Statistical Capacity Building (TFSCB) as well as through our sources, the WBG has been taking a stronger leadership in strengthening household surveys in client countries. Towards that end, in FY 2017 the WBG has been supporting household survey activities, with various levels of engagement and at different stages, in a total of 98 countries through the provision of financial and/or technical support. Of these, 38 surveys received financial and/or technical support through the TFSCB. A total of 26 surveys were reviewed, some by a panel composed by staff from DECDG and the Poverty GP as foreseen by the Household Survey Protocol, to ensure that the surveys are being conducted following high methodological standards, as endorsed by the HSWG. As many of the surveys are still in the field or have only recently been completed, data for most of those surveys are not yet publicly available. To further improve methodological standards, three new methodological guidelines have been drafted, providing information on best practices on various aspects of survey methodologies. Also, in order to monitor compliance with the targets both in terms of data availability and quality and ensure that countries are producing the requisite data to track poverty as well as adopting best practice methodologies, a scorecard has been designed and is being tested. Overall, progress in the provision of technical and financial support has been substantial, particularly thanks to the TFSCB, while the work on methodological development and standard setting has been more modest. Future funding for the TFSCB is still uncertain, raising some concerns on future technical support. Funding for methodological development and standard setting remains inadequate.
Based on the documentation provided, IEG confirms that Activities under 3A have been completed, while Activities under 3B began implementation. The moderate rating reflects the fact that the number of countries currently supported in the design and implementation of household surveys is increasing but still low, due to the Trust Fund supported activities still being in the early stage of implementation. Improved methodological standards have been adopted and endorsed by the Household Survey Working Group. Moreover, management indicates that 9 countries have received technical advice within and outside the Trust Fund for Statistical Capacity Building program to ensure their surveys are in line with methodological standards endorsed by the HH technical review panel under the Household Survey Working Group. These 9 countries are Djibouti, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Rwanda, Ghana, Palestine, Tanzania, Nigeria Myanmar. Management expects about 20 more countries in the pipeline over the next 2 FYs. In addition, 13 countries receive funding for data collection under the TFSCB: Chad, Sao Tome and Principe, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Myanmar, Vanuatu/Solomon Islands, Armenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Iraq, and the Palestinian Authority. Management indicates that these countries are required to sign grant agreements with the Bank which states that the data collected has to be released within 12 months of data collection and that the survey data should be disseminated in electronic micro datasets. The TFSCB pilot started in September 2015 and many of the countries started or will start field work in 2016/17. Management expects data releases starting from FY18.
Activities under 3A: Establishment of Household Survey Working Group (HSWG) have been completed. The Household Survey Working Group, reporting to the Development Data Directors (DDD) and Data Council, has been established with representation from all GPs and CCSAs. The HSWG meets approximately once a month and provides regular updates of progress to the DDD. The Household Survey Working Group is now the central hub for coordination of household survey activities within the WBG. As part of the HSWG work program, a WBG Action Plan on Household Surveys and a subsequent Implementation Strategy has been prepared.
Activities under 3B to support countries in the design and implementation of household surveys have begun primarily through funding from the Trust Fund for Statistical Capacity Building. A special window has been created within the TFSCB, through which we are currently supporting 16 surveys and providing technical assistance to 26 countries.