People walking along Tom Mboya st. in Nairobi
People walking along Tom Mboya St in Nairobi during COVID-19. Credit: Elphas Ngugi/GPSDD

On February 14, 2020, Africa recorded its first case of COVID-19, spurring many nations to quickly implement measures to curb the spread, including closing borders and enforcing lockdowns.

Governments across the continent needed to implement public health control measures, especially in areas with high population density and with levels of deprivation, insecure livelihoods, and infrastructure challenges.

Early on, the Global Partnership and UNECA jointly convened the Data for Now: Building Africa’s Resilience to COVID-19 initiative. Both organizations are dedicated to encouraging and assisting the public and private sectors across Africa to build and invest in robust data ecosystems, especially for data-driven decision- making in response to crises. The Global Partnership brings a global network of nearly 300 partners, all driven by the mission to use data to accelerate progress on the Sustainable Development Goals, while UNECA brings the power of the UN system and deep relationships with Governments across the continent.

The focus of the data partnerships is to strengthen countries’ response mechanisms as well as address the short- and long-term impacts of COVID-19 with data, through mapping populations, tracking the economic impact of the pandemic, and strengthening data ecosystems for the longer term.

This report offers insights into how and why data partnerships were so crucial during this unprecedented time and what was achieved when stakeholders from across the world came together to share resources — whether knowledge, technology, or technical support. It shows how this work will need to continue if the world is to be ready to meet future health crises and to tackle the looming threat of the climate emergency.

> Read the interactive report.

> Read the full PDF report in English

> Lisez le rapport en français.

> Explore the partnerships in the interactive visualization below.


Contributing Partners

United Nations Economic Commission for Africa
Multilateral organization
Established by the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations (UN) in 1958 as one of the UN's five regional commissions, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa's (ECA) mandate is to promote the economic and social development of its member states, foster intra-regional integration, and promote international cooperation for Africa's development.

This Resource Works to Achieve These SDGs