Why is it in the news?
The World Bank’s compilation of Statistical Performance Indicators (SPI) ranks India 67 among 174 countries in 2019.
More about the news
- Recently, questions have been raised about the credibility of India’s official statistics and the competence of statisticians. Further, statistical methods used for generating data are facing scrutiny.
- Some claim that administrative data may be of higher quality compared to data from surveys and censuses.
About Statistical Performance Indicators (SPI)
- SPI assesses five dimensions: Data use, Data services, Data products, Data sources, and Data infrastructure.
- India’s 2019 SPI score: 70.4, with lower scores in ‘Data use’ and ‘Data products’.
- ‘Data use’ is influenced by how different sectors utilize statistics, and India performs well in some areas but loses points in poverty estimation.
- ‘Data Products’ are crucial for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and India is taking steps to improve data collection for SDGs.
- ‘Data infrastructure’ scores moderately due to issues in ‘Standards and methods’ and poor performance in ‘Finance’.
- India’s ‘Finance’ category receives a low score due to insufficient funding.
- ‘Data Services’ score well but have room for improvement in online accessibility and metadata availability.
- India performs well in ‘Data sources,’ particularly in censuses and surveys.
- India excels in adopting certain standards but falls short in adopting others, affecting its overall score.
- Administrative data lags due to low birth registration under the Civil Registration System (CRS).
SPI Score and Relevance
- SPI scores highlight India’s strengths in censuses and surveys compared to administrative data.
- Improvement in key pillars could significantly boost India’s ranking.
- Proactive engagement with the World Bank is needed to strengthen the SPI.
- Consider using “Vital Statistics of India” for birth and death registration estimates.
- Work on improving ‘Data products,’ ‘Data use,’ and ‘Data infrastructure’ to enhance India’s ranking.
- Enhance online accessibility, metadata availability, and open terms for data usage in ‘Data Services.’