ESCAP work on the development of standards to measure disability and to improve disability data collection is based on the ESCAP/WHO disability project conducted in 2004-2006 and the UN Development Account project "Improvement of Disability Measurement and Statistics in Support of Biwako Millennium Framework and Regional Census Programme" 2008-2010. These projects were aimed at further promoting better disability data collection by developing standard measurements and improving national technical capacity.
The work on disability statistics has focused on contributing to the ongoing global initiatives on designing standard question sets for censuses and surveys by conducting pilot tests and post-pilot test data analyses which provide an empirical basis for establishing standard measurements for disability data collection. Key activities have included in-country advocacy workshops to encourage commitment among a wide range of stakeholders; targeted training of statistical experts and health professionals to improve national technical capacity; country advisory services to support national data collection effort; and the promotion of country-to-country cooperation and knowledge sharing.
This work has been conducted in close collaboration with the Budapest Initiative on Measurement of Health Status, the Economic Commission for Europe (ECE), the ESCAP Social Development Division, the Statistical Institute for Asia and the Pacific (SIAP), the United Nations Statistics Division (UNSD), the Washington Group on Disability Statistics, the World Health Organization (WHO), and selected National Statistical Offices in the region. For further information, please contact Statistics Division, ESCAP at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The meeting discussed: i) the results from further analyses of data collected from countries using the WG Short measure questions, and country experiences; ii) additional work on extended set on functioning; iii) methodological issues facing the WG including the development of questions for children, and the issue of designing questions for the measurement of environmental barriers and participation; iv) summary of the country reports, and an update on other Washington Group and collaborative activities; v) WG governance issues; vi) objectives of the 13th meeting; and vii) next steps.
As part of ESCAP’s work to strengthen national statistical offices’ capacity to collect comparable data on disability, the Statistics Division is organizing an expert group meeting to review the results of a second round of cognitive testing of the Washington Group/ESCAP extended question set to measure disability through surveys. The specific objectives of the EGM are to: i) discuss the results of the second round of cognitive testing of the question set on disability, in particular on the domains of communication, hearing, affect, pain and fatigue; ii) further train senior statisticians from Asia-Pacific on the skills required to undertake the analysis of cognitive interviews; and iii) discuss future areas of work on disability data collection and measurement.
The Tenth Meeting of the Washington Group on Disability Statistics took place in Luxembourg on 3-5 November 2010. The primary focus of the meeting was the discussion of the results of the cognitive tests conducted in the Asia-Pacific region and in Europe by the Granada Group. The meeting also served as a venue to discuss the pilot test undertaken in Asia and the Pacific under ESCAP’s UN Development Account project on disability statistics. Group discussions encompassed the understanding of methodological issues involved in both types of testing with the objective of agreeing on a final extended question set.
The Statistics Division in collaboration with the Washington City Group on Disability Statistics (WG), organized the last workshop of the UN Development Account Project: Improvement of Disability Measurement and Statistics in support of the Biwako Millennium Framework of Action and the Regional Census Programme. The workshop focused on training country participants in cognitive survey methods and presenting the results from the disability study’s pilot and cognitive tests.
This regional workshop provided a forum to discuss ongoing initiatives in improving disability measurement and statistics that are part of the Secretariat’s work in support of the Biwako Millennium Framework and the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Specifically, the workshop aimed to: (i) increase participants’ knowledge on the implementation of cognitive and pilot tests for questionnaire design, by disseminating the results of the cognitive and field tests of the WG/ESCAP extended question set to measure disability through surveys and (ii) further advocate WHO’s ICF-based approach for disability data collection through training on census and survey data collection.
The main objective of the meeting was to discuss the results of the cognitive test conducted by seven countries, namely Cambodia, Kazakhstan, Fiji, Maldives, Mongolia, Sri Lanka and Philippines, taking part in the ESCAP supported project on disability statistics. The results of this cognitive test were discussed during a meeting in May in Washington DC based on which experts agreed upon a final question set to be pilot tested between July and September of 2009 in the Asia and the Pacific region. Preliminary results of this field test might also be presented during the ninth WG meeting.
In light of ESCAP’s work to strengthen the capacity of national statistical offices in collecting data on disability, the Statistics Division co-organized several in-country trainings prior to the pilot testing of the Washington Group/ESCAP extended question set on disability for surveys. These in-country workshops were part of the activities supported by the UN Development Account project ‘Improvement of Disability Measurement and Statistics in Support of the Biwako Millennium Framework and Regional Census Programme’. The trainings took place during the following dates:
Participants were trained in skills required for qualitative research and analysis related to cognitive testing, and in conducting and analyzing field test results of an extended question set for surveys. In addition to gaining the knowledge necessary to undertake the cognitive and field tests in their respective countries over the coming months, the workshop provided participants with a critical opportunity to share their knowledge and experience in the area of disability data collection.
The main purpose of the meeting was to discuss and revise the proposed extended question sets to measure disability through surveys. The extended question set will be pilot tested in six countries of the Asian and the Pacific region as part of ESCAP’s project on 'Improvement of Disability Measurement and Statistics in Support of Biwako Millennium Framework and Regional Census Programme'. This meeting also served as the first gathering of the project’s Task-team formed by all participating countries, international experts on disability statistics and the secretariat.
The 2010 Round of Population and Housing Censuses provides a critical opportunity for improving disability statistics in most countries in the region. This workshop is part of ongoing global initiatives on promoting disability data collection through censuses and developing standard survey-based data collection instruments.
The new 2008-09 Improvement of Disability Measurement and Statistics project was presented at the seventh annual meeting of the Washington Group on Disability Statistics as well as analytical results to facilitate the ongoing global initiatives to develop extended sets of survey questions on disability. The first Steering Committee meeting of the project was also held during the annual meeting.
Previous project workshops
Fourth Workshop for Improving Disability Statistics and Measurement, Bangkok, 20-22 June 2006 (Workshop Documents)
Workshop on the implementation of the BMF: development of national plan of action on disability, Bangkok, 19-21 October 2005 (Link Workshop Documents)
Third Workshop for Improving Disability Statistics and Measurement (for Pilot Countries), Bangkok, Bangkok, 3-4 May 2005 (Workshop Documents)
Second Workshop for Improving Disability Statistics and Measurement, Bangkok, 27-29 September 2004 (Workshop Documents)
UNESCAP/NSO Thailand: Fourth Meeting of the Washington Group on Disability Statistics Bangkok, 29 September-1 October 2004 (Meeting documents)
First Workshop for Improving Disability Statistics and Measurement, Bangkok, 24-28 May 2004 (Workshop Documents)
Workshop on Improving Disability Data for Policy Use, Bangkok, 23-26 September 2003 (Workshop Documents)