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Big data analysis allows developing and validating new models of economic and social sustainability

24 March 2015|Briefing note

This was one of the statements made by Alicia Bárcena, Executive Secretary of ECLAC, at the opening of a workshop on sustainable development and big data that takes place today in Santiago, Chile.

Experts of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), CentroGeo of Mexico and the Centre of Research and Innovation in Information and Communications Technologies (INFOTEC) of that country gathered yesterday at ECLAC’s headquarters to discuss the possibilities presented by geomatics (a science that integrates geospatial perspectives and knowledge disciplines), geo-referencing, ICTs and big data analysis to examine poverty in-depth and to aim for a region that develops sustainably.

In her inaugural address of the workshop “Sustainable Development and Big Data Analysis”, the Executive Secretary of ECLAC, Alicia Bárcena, said that "the Post-2015 Development Agenda poses new measurement challenges, including the inequality between and within countries, as well as new ways of addressing the challenges of sustainable development. It is necessary to innovate for this new agenda and to this end geomatics can be an essential tool, since it allows considering the spatial aspect of the economic and social realities, identify territorial inequalities and consider public policies in their spatial dimension".

She also explained that the information and communication technologies have unveiled a new analytical discipline associated with the use of big data, presenting a unique opportunity to develop and validate new models of economic and social sustainability.

During the workshop there were presentations by the CentroGeo General Director, Dr. José Ignacio Chapela, Dr. Elvia Martínez Viveros, researcher and project coordinator, engineer Yosu Rodríguez Aldabe, project coordinator, and Cristina Pérez Carsi y Esteva, external adviser of the center. In addition, Dr. Juan Carlos Téllez Mosqueda, Deputy Director of Innovation and Knowledge of INFOTEC made a presentation.

On the occasion, experiences in the fields of geomatics and geo-referencing were exchanged and possible areas of cooperation were analyzed to address the challenges of development in the region through new approaches, methodologies and tools. Geomatics allows identifying and locating the focus of poverty, characterizing the biodiversity of the territories and determining the areas of influence of cities on natural resources, among other aspects.