U.N. Establishes Tableau as Visual Analytics Standard, Streamlines Global Adoption of Platform

Published March 20, 2018

NEW YORK (Office of Information and Communications Technology) — The United Nations and Tableau Software are proud to announce an unprecedented agreement that provides access to Tableau’s world class visual analytics to professionals working in 193 Member States across the United Nations system.

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres, speaking at the launch of the Centre for Humanitarian Data in The Hague in December 2017, highlighted the growing importance placed on data systems for disaster response.  The event showcased the role of data-informed decision-making applied to addressing social development issues and crisis response, including several innovations.

“Accurate data is the lifeblood of good policy and decision-making,” Mr. Guterres said.  “Obtaining it, and sharing it across hundreds of organizations, in the middle of a humanitarian emergency, is complicated and time‑consuming, but it is absolutely crucial.”

This partnership enables timely access to easily understood information in a crisis.  United Nations Assistant Secretary-General and Chief Information Technology Officer, Atefeh Riazi said:  “Effective use of data can help us expand our knowledge of fundamental issues, such as social and political instability, natural disasters and climate change, to improve decision-making and enhance our ability to predict, and even pre-empt, the next crisis.”

Ms. Riazi also highlighted that “strategic partnerships allow us to embrace data by making world class visual analytics available to United Nations offices globally.  The United Nations is the guardian of an unparalleled database of the world’s socioeconomic and political history.  Opening this data to the public and collaborating with partners will help us make better decisions that support the work of the United Nations.”

Tableau is the first United States-based enterprise software company to sign a master global agreement with the United Nations.  The agreement establishes Tableau as a global visual analytics standard across the United Nations system and simplifies the acquisition of the technology for all United Nations-affiliated entities.

“The scope, complexity and life-changing importance of the work being done across the United Nations has made easily understood data and insights more important than ever,” said Tableau Chief Executive Officer Adam Selipsky.  “Promoting peace and justice, ending poverty and ensuring all people have the opportunity to be seen and understood are values we share.  We’ve seen how data helps bridge divides and advance those efforts.  We are honoured to be a strategic partner in that process and help United Nations staff worldwide shape a better future for us all.”

Tableau’s establishment as a global visual analytics standard followed a comprehensive and exhaustive examination of Tableau’s technical capabilities and corporate standing.  The agreement builds on the work of multiple United Nations agencies already using Tableau to find insights and take on some of the world’s most pressing challenges.  The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) are some of the many agencies that have deployed Tableau to help improve the lives and livelihoods of people regionally.  This first-of-its-kind agreement allows agencies in the United Nations system — at Headquarters, in regional offices, or in country missions — to easily access Tableau’s industry-leading software.

Since 2015, the Tableau Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Tableau Software, has also partnered with United Nations agencies to foster data innovation and support people in the world’s most vulnerable communities.  Working through the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals framework, the Tableau Foundation partnered with the World Food Programme (WFP) to deliver real-time food security monitoring insights to decision makers in the field who are alleviating hunger and suffering in more than 80 countries.

Tableau Foundation also partnered with the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs’ Humanitarian Data Exchange on efforts to improve access to data in disaster preparedness and response.

“I am proud of the role the United Nations is taking in the global data revolution and am excited to see what we can accomplish when we bring our partners to the table, wherever they may be in the world,” said Ms. Riazi.  Tableau looks forward to creating a strategic partnership with the United Nations and the broader technology community to help the United Nations achieve its important goals.