This series is aimed at government policymakers and others who would like to better understand how different ICT trends will impact upon the economic, social and environmental arenas. The Brief on ICT Trends synthesizes existing research knowledge on the opportunities and risks of different ICT innovations to sustainable development, and provides recommendations for policy and practice. It is intended to be an introductory reference to support policy making and programme planning.
Each issue in this series focus on a particular topic, and this first issue introduces “Big Data”. Improvements in connectivity and mobile subscriptions around the world have resulted in the generation of large volumes of data which when captured, stored and analysed can be used to support development efforts. The High-Level Panel of Eminent Persons on the Post-2015 Development Agenda in 2013 recognized that big data, with its tremendous wealth of information, can enhance evidence-based decision making in critical development areas. This issue looks at how government policymakers can maximize the potential of big data by balancing its risks and rewards.