Tracking 132 indicators over 19 countries is extremely challenging for responsible institutions, and like many regions, the Pacific is still struggling to collect, organise and analyse headline-level data. Let alone produce time-series data to measure progress and change. As such, reporting on development progress in the Pacific tends to be narrative- based, and often dominated by anecdotal data and informed guesstimates. The SDGs targets and indicators framework present an opportunity to revolutionise reporting and legislative and policy formulation in the Pacific: adding rigour, discipline and creating a genuine record of progress over time.
With all these factors in mind, the Pacific SDG Partnership within UNDP, has led a collaboration with the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS), and the Pacific Community (SPC) to create SDGs Progress Wheels for each Pacific Island country, and at the regional level as well.
The Progress Wheels utilise data visualisation methods to present a large array of SDG- related data on a single page. Data visualisation is the graphical display of abstract information for two purposes: sense-making and communication.
The Pacific SDGs Progress Wheels provide a snap-shot of country and regional progress and the current state of available data for each of the Pacific Sustainable Development Indicators. They are designed to help leaders and decision-makers identify the state of progress and data gaps in a clear and succinct format.
They form a companion resource to the first Pacific Sustainable Development Report and are intended to support countries with their own reporting and data analysis.
Perhaps the strongest message the Progress Wheels relay is related to the paucity of data. For the Pacific, at least, comprehensive data sets are so far unavailable, lacking agreed methodology, or insufficient. This issue is particularly acute in relation to the key areas of climate and oceans.