World leaders must invest in better data on children – UNICEF

UNICEF is calling on world leaders to invest in better data on children, warning in a new analysis that sufficient data is available only for half of the child-related Sustainable Development Goals indicators.
The UNICEF analysis shows that child-related data, including measures on poverty and violence that can be compared, are either too limited or of poor quality, leaving governments without the information they need to accurately address challenges facing millions of children, or to track progress towards achieving the Goals.
To shine a spotlight on the lack of data, United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and UNICEF today launched a “time machine” installation at the United Nations in New York. The Time Machine – a capsule structure that demonstrates data through art by translating childhood memories from data into sound – gives visitors and delegates attending the United Nations General Assembly from 14-30 September an opportunity to understand the data on children currently available and areas that fall short.
“The world is committed to eliminating extreme poverty among children by 2030 and to reaching those furthest behind first. If we are going to succeed in achieving these ambitious goals, we first need data that tells us who these children are, where they live and what they need,” said Jeffrey O’Malley, UNICEF Director of the Division of Data, Research and Policy.
Examples of missing data: Around one in three countries does not have comparable measures on child poverty. Around 120 million girls under the age of 20 have been subjected to forced sexual intercourse or other forced sexual acts. Boys are also at risk, but almost no data is available. There is a shortage of accurate and comparable data on the number of children with disabilities in almost all countries.