21st century statistics: Rosstat hosted the international conference of the UN World Data Forum.

On September 10, 2021 the international conference "Road to Bern" of the 3rd UN World Data Forum started. International experts, practitioners, professors met at Rosstat to share their experience with colleagues and to discuss important trends in modern statistics.

It is symbolic that the event took place in a building designed by the French architect of Swiss origin Le Corbusier. It’s the place where Rosstat has been living and working for many years. Pavel Malkov, Head of Rosstat, spoke about the importance of the Modern Statistics Forum.

“Le Corbusier was an innovator, he strove to change people's lives through the architecture. Data  changes our lives today as well. Rosstat’s strategy fully reflects such key tendencies as the efficiency of data acquisition and improvement of its quality. We are  refuse paperwork and move to online data collection and actively use alternative data sources. We need top-ranked professionals with different competencies to achieve our goals. We are going to talk about skills that modern statistician should have today. We are grateful to our colleagues from Switzerland, the World Bank and the UN for their help in organizing this event. I am sure, it is going to be a significant step towards the final forum in Bern”- Pavel Malkov said  at the opening of the conference.

“This event is a chance for specialists to exchange their experience during the pandemic. In 2020 statistical offices in many countries were operating in an uncommon environment. Methods for continuous observation were created with limited resources” said Stefan Schweinfest, Director of the UN Statistics Division.

Georges-Simon Ulrich, Director-General of the Swiss Federal Statistical Office, noted that Russia and Switzerland had been cooperating for 200 years and now the relations between the countries are stronger than ever:

“We actively interact in the field of statistics,  with its help we can objectively look at reality. During the 3rd UN World Data Forum we decided to focus on Sustainable Development Goals. The Forum aims to draw attention to the topics of economics, data reliability and the environment. I am grateful to my colleagues from Russia for the opportunity to visit Moscow and invite everyone to take part in the next parts of the forum."


XXI century is the age of data. The profession of statistician and the experts competence are becoming more and more  important. According to Rikke Munk Hansen, Chief of the Economic and Environment Statistics Section, UNESCAP, a modern statistician must have other key skills besides statistical, mathematical and technical ones. He have to be aware of  the context in which the organization operates: the political, institutional, legislative environment as well as the role of data and statistics in society. The statistician should understand the values and fundamental principles which the organization  is committed. He interacts with data operators, users, and partners, whose expertise can be useful to create statistical products and services. A modern statistician always has professional curiosity, seeks to acquire new knowledge and skills, working in a constantly changing environment.

“Those people who work in any statistical organization are the organization itself. They are the potential and resource that enables the production of relevant, useful statistical products and services,” Rikke Munck Hansen summarized.

Renaud Seligmann, World Bank's Country Director for the Russian Federation, noted that Rosstat keeps up with current trends. This organization is the initiator of many projects aimed at sharing experience with the world community:

“Rosstat is known for implementing projects and experimenting with data sources, developing new qualifications and skills. I hope that, in coordination with our external and internal partners we will continue to work for the dissemination of knowledge, innovative approaches and modern statistical practices."