Conference on Data Quality for International Organizations Rome, Italy, 7 and 8 July 2008

Year published: 10/08/2008

To advocate and facilitate the flow of metadata between national and international statistical 

offices, built on FAO’s more than half a century accumulated experiences in the establishment 

of metadata of agricultural statistics, in 2006 FAO Statistics Division undertook the initiative 

to design and distribute an “Annotated Outline for Preparing Country Report on Metadata for 

National Agricultural statistics” to two groups with 16 countries each in two continents of 

Asia and the Pacific and the Middle East. 


To meet the challenge faced by the management of metadata at the international level, namely 

how to design a framework so that it can be used by countries to collect the relevant and 

succinct information in a manageable and comparable way, the Outline focuses on three main 

areas: (i) the national system of agricultural statistics; (ii) major domains and selected 

indicators of agricultural statistics; and (iii) major data sources for agricultural statistics. The 

idea is to view the national system of agricultural statistics as a production function and to ask 

what inputs, data sources, are used to produce what outputs, domains and indicators. The 

framework has since been improved with the benefit of feedbacks from consultation and 

discussion with countries through the application of the framework in selected pilot countries.