Until now, there were no globally recognized standards for statistics on forcibly displaced people. As a result, data on refugees, asylum seekers and internally displaced persons (IDPs) are often incomplete and cannot be compared. The work of the Expert Group on Refugee and IDP Statistics (EGRIS) paves the way towards better statistics on forcibly displaced populations. The International Recommendations on Refugee Statistics and the Technical Report on Statistics of IDPs, developed by the Expert Group, were endorsed by the UN Statistical Commission in March this year. Both documents are now available online.
With an ever-growing number of forcibly displaced persons globally, data is needed both at national and international level in order to improve understanding of needs of people who have been forced to leave their homes as well as the impact on hosting communities. Established in 2016 by the UN Statistical Commission, the Expert Group on Refugee and IDP Statistics (EGRIS) is tasked to address the challenges associated with the collection, compilation and dissemination of statistics on refugees, asylum seekers and internally displaced persons, including the lack of consistent terminology and difficulties in comparing statistics internationally.
The Group’s first results are the International Recommendations on Refugee Statistics and the Technical Report on Statistics of IDPs. Both the Recommendations and the Technical Report have been developed through a collaborative process including national authorities and international agencies responsible for statistics on forced displacement.
Recommendations that countries and international organisations can use to harmonise and improve the overall quality of statistics on forcibly displaced populations. The aim is to improve statistics on an important aspect of international migration and to improve common information about a situation with a significant impact on global welfare.
The report provides a stock-take of the current state of official IDP statistics as well as preliminary recommendations for improvement. Through case examples from different countries and references to existing practices, the report identifies a need to develop further guidance on statistics of these populations that often remain invisible due to poor data. Such guidance is currently being developed by the Expert Group.
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