Opening the Appetite: Data Skills for Global Development Training Programme

This course provides an introduction to data and data skills for global development. It covers both technical data skills, such as how to create basic data visualisations, and broader skills, such as how to critically evaluate data, navigate the politics of data and collaborate with stakeholders.


SDG17: Partnerships for the goals
SDG 17: Systemic Issues
Data for Sustainable Development
Methodology and statistical processes
Data processing and analysis
data and statistics for SDGs
data collection and manipulation
data communication
data ethics

As the quantity and forms of data available globally continues to grow exponentially, development is amongst the areas seeking to harness its potential - as exemplified by the UN calling for a ‘Data Revolution’ in development. The course serves as an introduction to this topic area and aims to ‘open the appetite’ of learners to the possibilities of data for global development - mastering some basics and developing confidence to deepen and expand their data skills in the future. The course syllabus was informed by in-depth interviews with development professionals about current and future data skills needs. Following the food metaphor, this course is organised into 5 modules:

1)     Opening the Appetite: What’s the potential of data skills for global development?

2)     Assembling the Ingredients: How can we source data?

3)     Preparing the Meal: How can we analyse and visualise our data?

4)     Digesting the Meal: How to communicate our findings and ensure they are used for high quality decision making?

5)     Still Hungry:  Where  can we find resources to further develop our data skills?

The course and underpinning research was developed as part of the ERASMUS+ funded project ‘Development Counts: Data Skills for Global Development’ project, led by the University of Gloucestershire in the UK in collaboration with Gazi Üniversitesi (Turkey), L-Università ta’ Malta (Malta) and Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia (Spain).

The course is available in English, Spanish and Turkish.

Download Syllabus

Target Audience

The course is open to anyone with an interest in learning about how data and data skills can contribute to global development. It is likely to be of particular interest to early career global development professionals/job seekers and higher education students studying social science related disciplines.

Learning Objectives

A learner completing this course should be able to :

  • Demonstrate a clear understanding the past, present and future role of data for global development and in global development careers
  • Source appropriate data for a given scenario
  • Create basic data visualisations and show an awareness of what makes effective data visualisations
  • Draw on a range of strategies to communicate data findings
  • Identify further training, resources and opportunities to build their data skills