Back to All Events

Harnessing Big Data and AI for the SDGs: Getting to Scale in Africa and Asia (hosted by UN Global Pulse)

  • UNDOCO Conference Room New York USA (map)

RSVP HERE TO JOIN IN PERSON OR REGISTER HERE TO JOIN REMOTELY. 

2018 marks the third year of implementation of the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development along with its 17 goals and 169 targets. Yet, several governments still need access to appropriate data on their populations and particularly the most vulnerable and marginalized people of their societies to fulfill the pledge of the Agenda to leave no one behind. Harnessing big data and artificial intelligence and complementing new data sources and technologies with traditional data are critical to produce the type of information needed for the achievement of the SDGs.

This discussion will explore UN-led examples of data innovation in the development and humanitarian sectors that have been institutionalized in Africa and Asia. Participants will hear from heads of Global Pulse labs who are leading teams to work on data innovation and artificial intelligence in the public sector to understand barriers and recommendations for what is needed to shift from proof-of-concept to scalable project applications in these regions and beyond.

About UN Global Pulse

UN Global Pulse is an innovation initiative of the Secretary-General with innovation labs in Jakarta, Kampala, and New York. Global Pulse harnesses the opportunities of big data, AI, and other emerging technologies for sustainable development and humanitarian action.

About the Speakers

Paula Hidalgo-Sanchi, Manager, Pulse Lab Kampala

Paula Hidalgo-Sanchis, PHD from Spain has worked for over 16 years as a developer practitioner. She has been working for the past several years as Manager of Pulse Lab Kampala in Uganda. A result driven professional, she has extensive field experience working as humanitarian and development practitioner in more than 20 countries. She has served as Social Policy Advisor and Manager on Innovations working with the United Nations based in Easter Caribbean. She has also worked as analyst and manager with the World Food Programme (WFP) in Central America, Afghanistan, and the Democratic Republic of North Korea. Before joining the UN, Paula worked as programme manager with a Spanish NGO. Paula has a strong technical background with specialized studies on international assistance. She holds a PhD in Geography and is the author of an awarded PhD thesis entitled "Vulnerability analysis and International Assistance". An expert on Geographical analysis she is passionate about promoting the use of big data and big data analytics for human development.

Derval Usher, Head of Office, Pulse Lab Jakarta

Derval Usher is Head of Office for Pulse Lab Jakarta, a data innovation lab which harnesses the power of new digital data sources and real-time analytics for development and humanitarian action. Pulse Lab Jakarta is a joint initiative of the United Nations (through UN Global Pulse) and the Government of Indonesia (through Bapennas), the first innovation lab of its kind in Asia, bringing together experts from United Nations agencies, government ministries, non-governmental organizations and the private sector. Prior to joining the UN, Derval was General Manager of the European Chamber of Commerce in Jakarta, Indonesia and before that in Shanghai, China. She has a wealth of experience in trade policy and government relations. She has also worked with the World Food Programme and the European Commission. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in International Business with French and German from Dublin City University in Ireland and a Master degree in Chinese and International Relations from the University of Sheffield, UK.