SBS Management & CEO, Aliimuamua Malaefono (2nd frm left) with UNDP Deputy Resident Representative, Verena Linneweber (2nd frm right) & Acc Lab staff

The Samoa Bureau of Statistics (SBS) is partnering with the United Nations Development Progamme (UNDP) Accelerator Lab (Acc Lab) to experiment on how to enhance Samoa’s birth registration system.

A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), signed today, marks the beginning of this partnership to map the digital pathways and potential solutions towards a national digital registration system that is accessible and user-friendly for all citizens.

SBS will work with the Acc Lab to co-create and co-design appropriate digital solutions to enhance the robustness of the Births, Deaths & Marriages (BDM) system and registration process.

“The Division of Births, Deaths and Marriages still faces delays of birth registrations despite continuous trainings with village representatives and media advocacy programmes to encourage birth registration within three months after the child’s birth, as mandated in the Registration for Births, Deaths and Marriages Act 2002. One of our Strategic Objectives in the National Strategy for the Development of Statistics 2011-2021, is to increase the timeliness, availability, quality, coverage, transparency and usefulness of statistics on Samoa and its people. Noting the fast technological changes and the changing environment in terms of data collection, testing a digital solution to increase the timeliness and coverage of birth registration is a great opportunity to supplement the usual advocacy programmes,” said Aliimuamua Malaefono Taua, SBS Chief Executive Officer.

The MOU signals the start of exploration activities by SBS and the Acc Lab to assess the causes of delays and/or no birth registrations (as in some cases of home births), and to carry out community asset and solutions mapping to inform its experimentation designs.

“The Acc Labs are UNDP’s new way of working in development. Together with our core partners, the State of Qatar and the Federal Republic of Germany, 92 labs serving 120 countries are working with national and global partners to find radically new approaches that fit the complexity of current development challenges. This partnership with SBS is a great example of this vision at work in the local context, in an area of need,” said Verena Linneweber, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative.


For media queries, please contact:
Laufaleaina Lesa, UNDP Multi Country Office, Samoa|Tel. +685 23670|E: @UNDP in Samoa, Cook Islands, Tokelau & Niue @undpsamoa

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