Statistics in development cooperation

The Eurostat publication ‘Guide to statistics in European Commission development cooperation’ supports non-statisticians needing to deal with statistics in development programmes and projects. This set of background articles provides an ‘outline of knowledge’ of main issues of statistical cooperation with developing countries, based on the much more detailed presentation available in the Guide.

The Guide is downloadable in PDF format in English, French and Spanish.

Table of contents


EU support to partner countries
Guide to statistics in European Commission development cooperation
Interventions to support statistics


Why the Guide?
Who is the Guide for?
What is in the Guide?
What is this 'outline of knowledge'?

1. Statistics by policy area

Introduction to "Statistics for policy issues"

2. Coordination

Why is coordination important to support statistics?
Who are the key partners supporting statistical development?
Partners' support to statistical development: what and where?

3. Advocacy

Advocacy for statistics and statistical strategies at national level
For which areas is promotion of statistics particularly important?
How should efficient advocacy for statistics be designed?

4. Millennium Development Goals

What are the specificities of the Millennium Declaration and the MDGs?
How are the MDG indicators defined?
How does the European Commission take the MDG indicators into account?

5. National Strategies for Development of Statistics (NSDS)

Performance measurement of the national development strategy
A strategy for the development of statistics?
National Strategies for the Development of Statistics (NSDS)
The NSDS methodology

6. Supporting implementation of National Strategies for Development of Statistics

Implementation of the NSDS at national level
International support to NSDS implementation
European Commission support to NSDS implementation

7. Regional statistical initiatives

Statistics and regional cooperation - the European experience
The interests and limits for regional statistical activities in developing regions
Factors which influence regional support programmes
Statistical projects at regional level
Core principles for a regional statistical project
PARIS21's 'Regional Strategy for the Development of Statistics' (RSDS) approach

8. Statistics in the European Commission project cycle

Statistics do matter: statistics, indicators and the European Commission project cycle
What is an indicator?
Statistics before the start of the cycle of operations
The allocation of funds and the related indicators
Statistics and the cooperation project cycle

9. Improving statistical capacity

Why is strengthening statistical capacity important?
How can statistical capacity be strengthened?
Which financial instruments are available to strengthen statistical capacity?

10. Data availability

Official statistics in a nutshell
Data on developing countries from international sources
National data or international data?
Finding (national) official data

11. Quality in statistics

Quality in statistics
What is essential for statistics of good quality?
How to assess the quality of statistics?

12. National statistical systems

What is the 'national statistical system' and what is its role?
Use national data first!
Snapshot of the NSS – a tool developed by Eurostat

13. Development indicators

What is the role of statistics and indicators in the aid context?
How does the European Commission use performance measurement indicators?
What are the different types of indicators and what are they measuring?

14. Budget support

What is the connection between EU budget support and statistics?
Are the statistics of sufficient quality to be used for budget support?
How to integrate statistics in the budget support process?