Long are gone the days when “unicorn” data scientists were a thing — now it’s all about teamwork and Open Source data collaborations for public good

At Armenia National SDG Innovation Lab our passion lies within mainstreaming innovation and evidence-based decision-making in public policymaking. Data is the backbone of any decision-making: mobile device generated data, remote sensing, and social media are used by the private sector for marketing, advertising, and better management. …

By Ruzanna Baldryan, Communications Lead, SDG Innovation Lab

Not long ago, the private companies spoke a language different from the main players in the development sector: social initiatives used to be side projects rather than the core of the operations of the businesses. Likewise, for decades, the social initiative gap was closed mainly by development organizations sometimes with little focus on the long-term financial sustainability of their initiatives. …

What is it and why does it matter to you?

In the obscure world of policymaking, one very specific view of human beings reigns supreme. This is the view that sees individuals as rational machines who can compute everything and easily make decisions that increase their material well-being.

Want to increase spending among your population? Easy! Just add some incentives that make it rational for people to spend more, or irrational to save (the basic logic of monetary policy). Trying to reduce carbon emissions as a result of too many people driving? Simple — just explain the long-term effects of climate change!

You wouldn’t be alone if you think this…

You may have heard the buzz around leveraging private finance for the Sustainable Development Goals, or SDGs for short. This lively discussion is driven by the fact that we’re currently facing a shortfall of about $2,5 trillion globally, an amount that dwarfs current aid and ODA flows.

As a National SDG Innovation Lab, we’re in the front seat driving SDG implementation in Armenia and are seeing this “capital” challenge up close. For the past few months, we’ve been trying to find meaningful ways to involve businesses and investors in Armenia’s development pathway.

One of the most promising directions is Social…

Back in November of last year, in a room full of policy-makers and development practitioners in the Armenian capital of Yerevan, we launched an innovation lab aimed at accelerating SDG implementation.

A part-government, part-UN hybrid, the launch of the newly-christened Armenian National SDG Innovation Lab was accompanied by a cascade of commitments including everything from revamping Armenia’s statistical architecture to training an in-house government behavioural science team.

In any industry, we encounter gaps between results and rhetoric, between what sounds good and what’s actually doable. The development sector is certainly no different. With this firmly in the back of our mind and four months in the rear-view mirror, we’ve decided to take stock and ask how are we doing? Have we been living up to our promises to be transformative? …

Armenia SDG Innovation Lab

World’s first National SDG Lab — accelerating #ADS2030 and #SDGs implementation in Armenia. Joint initiative of the Government of Armenia & the UN.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store