The Centre organised a special meeting with the Heads and representatives of the National Statistical Organisations (NSOs) of the OIC member countries on 28th June 2007 on the sidelines of the Second OECD World Forum on Statistics, Knowledge and Policy, which was held in Istanbul, Turkey on 27-30 June 2007.
Heads and representatives of NSOs in 21 OIC member countries attended the meeting. The representative of the IDB and other regional and international institutions have also attended the meeting.
The meeting aims at informing the NSOs of the member countries with the recent and future statistical activities of the Centre and exploring their views on these activities and on the best possible ways and means of strengthening and enhancing cooperation between the Centre and the NSOs in the member countries.
At the outset, a welcome speech was made by Dr. Savaş Alpay, the Director General of the Centre. In his address, the Director General mentioned that the Centre has recently introduced new measures and taken new actions for the implementation of its various statistical activities.
Dr. Alpay also mentioned that, in an attempt to enhance cooperation with the NSOs of the member countries and keep them informed on the statistical activities of the Centre, the centre has recently started to organise, whenever it is possible, special meetings with the representatives of those organisations on the sidelines of different regional and international conferences.
Following the address of the Director General, Mr. Nabil Dabour, Senior Researcher at the Centre, made a detailed presentation on the current and future statistical activities of the Centre. In his presentation, Mr. Dabour mentioned that the Centre’s statistical databases have been enriched in terms of both the coverage and content, where new areas of statistics have been covered and the number of indicators and variables have been increased. He also mentioned that the rate of dissemination of these data, particularly in the electronic format, has been greatly increased due to the successive improvements the Centre has made on the technical capacities and design features of its web site.Among other things, Mr. Dabour informed the meeting that the Centre has recently initiated a training programme for statistical capacity building in the NSOs of the member countries. The Programme aims at exploring the possibility of matching the needs and capacities of the NSOs in the member countries and investigating the most practical ways of sharing their existing capacities.
In her presentation, Dr. Sidika Basci, Senior Researcher at the Centre, explained the details of the Statistical Data Collection and Dissemination Software System that the Centre is currently developing, in collaboration with the Turkish Statistical Institution. This system is a new searchable and dynamic system whereby up-to-date statistical data on over 200 indicators will be electronically collected from the NSOs in the 57 member countries. It will enable permitted users of the Centre’s web site to perform graphics or raw data-based cross-searches on the Centre’s Statistics Database.
She also informed the meeting that the Centre also designed a new version of its web site, which will facilitate the development of the above-mentioned Software System and allow enriching and frequently updating the Centre’s statistical directories such as those of universities, statistical experts, research institutions, etc.
Following these presentations, the participants discussed some possible ways and means of strengthening and enhancing cooperation between the Centre and the NSOs in the member countries and the following recommendations have been agreed upon:
(A) Provision of Statistics and Published Statistical Documents
• The NSOs will continue to cooperate with the Centre by providing all statistical data and information required by the Centre both electronically through the Centre’s computerised system and website, and by promptly responding to the questionnaires it circulates to them.
• The NSOs will continue to cooperate with the Centre by providing published material and documents to the Library of the Centre both in hard copies and in electronic format, and by providing the Centre full and free access to their databases.
• The mechanism proposed by the Centre for enhancing the mutual cooperation and coordination between the Centre and the NSOs of the OIC member countries is highly appreciated. Each NSO may, therefore, assign at least one well-trained personnel to work as a channel for flow of information between the two parties.
• The NSOs agreed to provide the Centre the same data they provide to other international institutions. In this respect, the Centre is recommended, if needed, to collaborate with other international organisations on the collection and dissemination of statistical data.
(B) Training and Capacity Building
• The NSOs encourage and recommend the Centre to intensify its endeavours to continue with its training programmes for statistical capacity building in the NSOs of the member countries and call upon the IDB to provide the Centre with the necessary technical and financial support for these programmes.
• The NSOs will, in collaboration with the Centre, open their own statistical training courses to participants from other member countries and send experts to their counterparts to provide technical assistance.
• The NSOs may organise, in collaboration with the centre, joint training programs on topics of common interest to the member countries and exchange information on their training and capacity building activities.
• The NSOs encourage and recommend the Centre to continue organising meetings with the NSOs at the regional level, while considering the possibility of organising, when necessary, a general meeting with the participation of the NSOs in all the member countries, in collaboration with the IDB.
(1) SESRTCIC Statistical Activities: Improving Cooperation with NSOs of the OIC Member Countries
(2) Easy and Quick Transfer of Statistical Data from NSOs of OIC Member Countries to SESRTCIC