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12 December 2023

SCAD delegation visits Statistics Canada to promote cooperation, takes part in ISI World Statistics Congress 2023


A high-level delegation from the Statistics Centre – Abu Dhabi (SCAD) has paid an official visit to Canada’s National Statistical Agency (Statistics Canada) to discuss ways to promote mutual cooperation and share expertise in the fields of official statistics’ management, production, and dissemination.

The SCAD delegation participated in the 64th ISI World Statistics Congress, held in Ottawa from 16th to 20th July 2023.

The delegation included Badria Abdalla Obaid, Executive Director of the Foresight and Communications Sector; Dr. Haifa Ali Alhamdani, Acting Executive Director of the Strategy and Planning Sector; and Rabaa Mohammed Baniyas, Acting Executive Director of the Corporate Support Sector and Director of SCAD’s Statistical Training Institute (STI).

The SCAD – Statistics Canada discussions focused on fostering collaboration through a sustainable strategy to see the two parties sharing experience in the best practices to advance the national statistical work, providing reliable and high-quality statistical indicators to empower a well-informed decision and policy-making process.

The two teams held a number of sessions to discuss methodologies of the production and dissemination of statistical analysis reports to effectively engage the public. The teams also exchanged insights on innovative tools and methods used in population censuses and the subsequent dissemination of results.

The experience of Statistics Canada’s Trust Centre in raising public awareness about the importance of official statistics in empowering individuals and institutions has been addressed in the sessions. Additionally, the most recent statistical projects, development initiatives as well as data confidentiality and privacy efforts of the Canadian agency were tackled in the meetings.

Additional discussions highlighted the contributions of Statistics Canada’s Small Business Hub in helping the existing and aspiring small business owners and entrepreneurs plan and run their enterprises, ensuring a better understanding of the country’s population and society, as well as the conditions of the business environment.

The Canadian side showcased their experience with the development of interactive dashboards and maps as valuable tools for decision-makers in the emergency and crisis management-related authorities.

Badria Obaid said, “In alignment with SCAD’s strategy to adopt the best practices in the statistics industry, we had a series of meetings that were mainly focused on the use of innovative technologies to advance statistical ecosystems, supporting the decision-making, and foreseeing the future. We had the chance to explore the experience of Statistics Canada in managing key statistical projects, including Canada’s 2021 Census.”

“We discussed communication and dissemination strategies in national statistics offices with the Canadian team,” she added. “We highlighted SCAD’s experience with the Insights and Foresights Platform (IFP). This platform harnesses the power of artificial intelligence to provide interactive dashboards and analytical models, helping the Abu Dhabi Government make well-informed policy decisions.”

During the visit, SCAD representatives took part in specialised training courses that were organised by the International Statistical Institute (ISI) in partnership with the University of Ottawa, Canada. The courses delved into advancements in machine learning, statistical data integration, data processing, and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) as they relate to statistical work.

Rabaa Baniyas said, “With the evolving statistical landscape, we at SCAD’s Statistical Training Institute are committed to staying in tune with exceptional global practices. Engaging in these courses allows us to collaborate with international experts, gaining insights that enrich our training programmes in line with the need for solid statistical frameworks.”

The SCAD team was also a proactive participant in the 64th World Statistical Congress, organised by the International Statistical Institute (ISI) in Ottawa, Canada. During the event, SCAD showcased six research papers on subjects ranging from data science and foresight to predictive statistical estimates and statistics capacity-building.

In this context, Dr Haifa Alhamdani said, “SCAD’s participation in the 64th ISI World Statistics Congress aims to exchange experiences, share achievements, and learn about the latest findings from the global statistics community. Through this participation, the delegation highlighted SCAD’s institutional strategy, the importance of developing Abu Dhabi’s statistical portfolio, and a number of projects implemented by SCAD to raise the quality of data and statistics, and to develop the statistical ecosystem through cooperation with partners from both the governmental and private sectors.”

The visit underscores SCAD’s strategic intent of forging enduring partnerships with national statistical offices across the globe. The initiative seeks to tap into global expertise, bolstering Abu Dhabi’s statistical framework.