This policy brief investigates the vital role of data-driven decision-making in the response to the Covid-19 pandemic. It begins with setting the context by elaborating on existing practices and challenges towards a data-driven approach in decision making. The brief cites regional examples from the South Mediterranean, sub-Saharan Africa, and Germany on how governments and municipalities developed data dashboards and platforms and employed them in the pandemic response.
The policy brief concludes with an elaborate discussion on the implications and recommendations on how the current crisis can be turned into an opportunity for regional collaboration and promoting data-driven processes in the recovery from the pandemic. Recommended policy actions include mapping the population that is in urgent need of vaccination, strengthening public health preparedness through bilateral and multilateral cooperation, and creating Communities of Practice that contribute to promoting health equity.
Recommendations to promote data sets and data analytics in municipalities are also proposed, including the suggestion to integrate User-Friendly GIS software that is customized specifically for municipal use and written in the country’s native language, which could allow unlocking the geospatial system’s full potential.