UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA - AFRICAN STUDIES CENTER
PADIS Newsletter, Vol.9, No.2, June '94

PADIS Newsletter, Vol.9, No.2, June '94

April-June 1994
Congo President visits PADIS

The President of the Republic of the Congo Pierre Loussaba visited PADIS on 26 May in the course of his official visit to Ethiopia. A scientist and former expert at UNESCO, the President was very interested in the possibilities for the Congo offered by a demonstration of CD-ROM databases and electronic networking.

During his visit to PADIS President Loussaba asked that a PADIS expert come to the Congo as part of the delegation accompanying the ECA Executive Secretary in July 1994. The President said that he envisaged an electronic network with his Cabinet office serving as a node and linking the Cabinet, the Prime Ministers Office's and the other Ministers in a Ministerial network for circulation and discussion of draft decrees and laws. In addition, he foresaw a public research and development network based at the National Centre for Scientific and Technical Information (CNDIST) in Brazzaville.

Standing Committee to meet
The sixth meeting of the Standing Committee on the Harmonization and Standardization of Documentation and Information Systems in Africa will take place at the headquarters of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa in Addis Ababa from 14-18 November 1994.

This year's meeting is important for several reasons. With the assistance of a grant from the Carnegie Corporation of New York, PADIS has been working for nearly a year on ways to increase information exchange in the Africa region by developing standards and promoting compatibility. The standards cover the entire range of the information management and production process, from classification to dissemination and exchange.

Among the topics of special interest are: standards for textual database management software (DBMS) for use in the Africa region, for the purchase of microcomputer hardware and for electronic communication software. Demonstrations will be made of conversion programmes that have been developed between varieties of DBMS software in use in the region. Throughout the meeting hands-on computer demonstrations will accompany the discussion of reports.

The aim of this year's meeting is for members to come to a consensus on the standards being presented so that they can be disseminated throughout the Africa region. This will allow the Committee to move to the next stage - promoting electronic information exchange and the production of one or more CD-ROM's of development information from African sources.

Any institution from the region interested in information compatibility issues is invited to attend.

The language of the meeting will be English. Further details are available from PADIS at the address listed on p. 1.

News from PADIS

PADIS in South Africa
In the first UNECA mission to South Africa after the inauguration of President Nelson Mandela, PADIS attended the INFO AFRICA NOVA Conference 1994 held in Pretoria from 16-20 May 1994.

The conference was attended by over 300 documentation, library, computer and information science professionals from throughout southern Africa. Organized in parallel session, it centred on the following topics: the future of education in information science; library and information services in a new political setting, computerizing information services and information technology for development.

In the new atmosphere of the country there was tremendous interest from South Africa in connecting with PADIS' intra-African network. During the stay in South Africa, PADIS held discussions with South African officials and visited Government offices, including the Ministry of Art, Culture, Science and Technology, the Central Statistical Services, the State Library and the Centre for Scientific and Industrial Research.

South Africa expressed particular interest in receiving advisory services from PADIS to assist the country in indentifying a national focal point in the PADIS network and to help the Subdirectorate of Meta-Information in the Ministry of Arts to harmonize its national information networking activities.PADIS' representative at the Conference was Mr. Makane Faye, Regional Advisor on Information Systems. Copies of his mission report are available upon request from PADIS.

PADIS in Senegal
PADIS undertook a mission to Senegal from 13-20 April 1994 to plan an evaluation of Senegal's national scientific and technological information policy which was first elaborated in the early 80s. It should be noted that Senegal is one of few SubSaharan [sp?] African countries with a policy in this area. However, in view of rapid changes in science and technology since this time Senegal was eager to bring it up to date.

The mission was undertaken at the request of the PADIS national participating centre in Senegal, the National Centre for Scientific and Technical Documents (CNDST) which operates under the Ministry of Modernisation and Technology. The mission was undertaken by PADIS' Regional Advisor on Information Systems Makane Faye. Following the mission, PADIS is continuing to assist Senegal in its policy evaluation through the recruitment of a consultant. A copy of his mission report (in French only) is available upon request from PADIS.

ECA Ministerial Conference
PADIS participated in the twenty-ninth session of the Economic Commission for Africa and the twentieth meeting of the Conference of African Ministers responsible for Planning and Economic Development held in Addis Ababa from 2-5 May 1994. The meeting was attended by 41 member States of the Commission.

The theme of the conference was "ECA at 35: Building critical capacities in Africa for accelerated growth and sustainable development". PADIS was involved with the agenda items presenting the report of the eighth meeting of the Joint Conference of African Planners, Statisticians and Demographers (see PADIS Newsletter vol. 9, no. 1) and in the preparation of the paper on Building and Utilizing Physical Infrastructural Capacities in Africa (E/ECA/CM.20/14).

The Conference passed resolution 789 (XXIX) entitled "Strengthening information systems for AFrica's recovery and sustainable development" which appealed to member States to recognize the vital importance of developing their information sector by adopting national information and informatics policies and providing sufficient resources in the national budget for the essential growth of this area. The resolution also urged member States to approve the utilization of new technology for electronic communication in order to permit Africa's full access to the global information highway.

Copies of the full text of resolution 789 as well as the paper on physical infrastructural capacities are available upon request from PADIS.

Joint Inspection Unit at UNECA
PADIS co-ordinated the visit of a three-member team from the United Nations Joint Inspection Unit in Geneva to UNECA from 7-15 April to study the specific needs of Africa in relation to its draft report on "Communication for development programmes in the United Nations system." Led by Inspector Francesco Mezzalama, the team also sought the views of UNECA on telecommunications and related information technology in the United Nations system.

Copies of the final study on "Communication and development" are expected to be available in July 1994. Copies may be requested from PADIS.

PADIS in USA
PADIS participated in a series of meetings in the USA from 18-22 April. The primary purpose of the trip was a three-day brain-storming session on scientific and technological information in Africa organized by the Carnegie Corporation of New York, which has funded a series of PADIS studies on promoting information compatability in Africa.

In the course of the visit PADIS made presentations on its project on "Capacity Building for Electronic Communication in Africa" to audiences at the United Nations Development Programme in New York and the Economic Development Institute of the World Bank in Washington, D.C.

Meetings were also held to discuss collaboration with UNDP's Sustainable Development Network, with the Health Foundation to co-ordinate health information projects in Africa, with the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) on on-going project issues, with the Population Division of the United Nations on the revitalisation of POPIN-Africa, with the World Bank Africa Department to discuss co-financing of the CABECA project and with the American Association for the Advancement of Science to plan joint workshops in Africa. PADIS' representative was Ms. Nancy J. Hafkin, Officer-in-Charge.

Transport info meeting
PADIS represented UNECA at the Founders Conference on Global Transport Knowledge Exchange, an international meeting on the exchange of information and the transfer of technology for road transport held in Casablanca, Morocco from 9-11 June 1994. organized by the Permanent International Association of Road Congresses (PIARC). PADIS' spokesperson was Mr. Saddik Solbi, Systems Development Officer. More than 200 persons from 45 countries attended the meeting to discuss the launching of "interchange" network on road transport.

One of the tasks of the Second United Nations Transport and Communication Decade for Africa is the elaboration of an African transport database, a task in which PADIS is collaborating with the UNECA Transport, Tourism and Communications Division on. At the meeting, PADIS briefed delegates on progress made to date on this database as well as on its information network in Africa.

document consisting of the objectives of UNCTADA II, the transport database project for Sub-Saharan Africa and the PADIS based CABECA project.

PADIS in Zimbabwe
PADIS attended two meetings in Zimbabwe in mid-June 1994. As one of the corresponding institutes in Africa, PADIS participated in the International Centre for Economic Growth Conference on Economic Reform and Liberalization: perspectives from African experiences held in Harare from 13-17 June. Among the topics discussed were structural adjustment in Africa, fiscal policy reforms and lessons from the African experience; agricultural and trade policy reforms; and lessons for Africa from economic reform and liberalization in Asia and Latin America. The conference produced a wealth of papers on these subjects, all of which have been indexed and abstracted for PADIS' PADdev bibliographic database. A listing of these is available upon request from PADIS.

PADIS also attended the UNESCO Intergovernmental Informatics Programme Workshop on Information and Informatics: needs and priorities for the countries of southern Africa, in Bulawayo from 16-17 June. The workshop brought together experts on networking and communication with education experts familiar with information technology. Participants presented papers on the information technology situation in their countries. Copies of the list are available upon request from PADIS.

From the PADIS Network

Eritrea nominates NPC
In May Eritrea became the thirty-ninth state in the PADIS network with the nomination in May 1994 of the Ministry of Finance and Development as its national participating centre. According to the Minister Haile Woldense, the Ministry is responsible for the collection, classification and dissemination of nationally produced social and economic development literature.

PADIS will send an advisory mission to Eritrea from 19-23 December 1994 to assist the Ministry in establishing a computerized system of information storage and retrieval. In the meantime, another PADIS sent another mission to Asmara for the setup of electronic communication. (See Information Technology section).

Restarting WADIS
The revitalisation of its West African Development Information System was the subject of a mission to Niamey, Niger undertaken from 9-16 June by PADIS Regional Advisor on Information Systems Makane Faye. Based at the Economic Commission for Africa regional office in Niamey since 1986, the system suffered from inadequate financing and shortage of personnel. The lack of a host country agreement was another impediment to its active functioning.

In 1994 the Government of Niger, through its Ministry of Finance and Planning signalled its willingness to enter an agreement to host the subregional centre, building on the strengths of its national participating centre in the PADIS network, the Economic and Social Documentation and Information Centre (CIDES) and requested PADIS to undertake an evaluation mission on the situation of WADIS. The mission endorsed the relocation of WADIS at CIDES, with the documentation centre of the ECA regional office to serve as a node in the system. Following the drafting of a host country agreement and its submission to the ECA Executive Secretary for signature, the Government of Niger also requested UNDP to allocate a percentage of the funds earmarked for Niger to the operation of WADIS.

A copy of the draft agreement and of the report of the evaluation mission of WADIS are available (in French only) upon request from PADIS.

On Zimbabwe
Available from UNESCO is a report entitled "Zimbabwe: Planning of a National Scientific and Technological Information and Documentation Centre" (1992). Requests for copies can be addressed to UNESCO, 7 Place de Fontenoy; 75352 Paris 07 SP France; fax +33 1 42 73 3007.

STI network in Uganda
Uganda has embarked on a science and technology information network, to pool the existing resources on science and technology in the country. While some institutions have rich collections, there is minimal information sharing and a wide information resource utilisation gap.

Under the leadership of the Uganda National Council of Science and Technology, 26 national institutions now form part of the network, one of whose major objectives is to enhance information flow between research scientists, scientific and technological institutions, policy and decision makers and other information end users. Among the first activities of the network are the exchange of bibliographies and accession lists and issuance of a newsletter.

More information is available from the Uganda National Council for Science and Technology, 76 Buganda Road; P.O. Box 6884, Kampala, Uganda; tel. 250499, fax 234579.

Information Technology

Nodes in Eritrea
PADIS' project on "Capacity Building for Electronic Communication in Africa (CABECA)" set up two new electronic communication nodes in Asmara, Eritrea in April 1994. The two nodes are at the Eritrea Information Systems Agency (EISA) and, particularly for Mac users, at Adal Computer Centre. Since Eritrea does not have International Direct Dialling for the time being, mail goes via the PADIS Fidonet node in Addis Ababa.

The installation of the two PADIS CABECA nodes coincided with the erection of a SatelLife HealthNet ground station in Asmara, thus greatly increasing the possibilities of electronic communication in Eritrea in the course of one month (see related story below).

Users wanting to contact points in Eritrea can contact PADIS for a list and for information on sending e-mail to Eritrea.

PADIS hosts HealthNet meeting
PADIS hosted a workshop of HealthNet SatelLife network managers at UNECA in Addis Ababa from 11-15 April. Conducted by senior staff from HealthNet based in Cambridge MA (USA), the meeting brought together systems operators and network managers from 14 African countries with operating ground stations for satellite communication, including the operator from the newly established node in Eritrea.

The meeting featured technical presentations and demonstrations as well as financial and administrative issues in the operation of HealthNet. In addition to the workshop, HealthNet staff met with PADIS to discuss collaboration in electronic networking in Africa. A meeting of the HealthNet SatelLife Steering Committee in Ethiopia, of which PADIS staff members Nancy J. Hafkin and Lishan Adam are members, was also held on 12 April.

CABECA at Telecom 94
CABECA project officer Lishan Adam was a member of the ECA delegation attending Africa Telecom 94 held 25-27 April in Cairo, Egypt. CABECA's interest in attending the conference was to highlight some of the problems it faces in promoting telematics in Africa, viz.:

Telecommunications tariffs in Africa are not designed to embrace data communications. Operating electronic networks over bad telephone lines usually results in enormous telephone bills.

international traffic in Africa is not organized to promote regional co- operation and build the needed store and forward and/or leased line based regional and international connections.

maintenance and management of telecommunication services leave much to be desired. Computer users whose e-mail arrives regularly and are used to check it several times a day can not tolerate line breakdowns for days and weeks. When a national node line is cut users overwhelm system operators.

The major event at Africa Telecom 94 was the special session of the World Telecommunication Forum on the theme "Integrating Africa Regionally and Globally: a Challenge for Telecommunications and Development".

The forum was organized around this theme in the form of sessions and workshops. Copies of the mission report are available upon request from PADIS.

PADIS at INET 94
PADIS attended the 1994 meeting of the Internet Society in Prague, Czech Republic from 9-14 June. PADIS' interest centred on the developing countries' workshop, where dialup Internet connections were discussed among many other issues, including cost sharing and billing. The presence of thousands of Internet users and systems operators gave PADIS the opportunity to meet with its consultants in the field in Africa under the CABECA project, as well as with CABECA's sponsor, the International Development Research Centre (Canada). PADIS was represented in Prague by Mr. Lishan Adam, CABECA project officer.

New node at Arusha
In April 1994 CABECA consultant Douglas Rigby installed a new FIDO electronic communication node called "marie" at Arusha, Tanzania. The installation represented the first electronic networking node in the northern Tanzanian city. Systems operator at the node which bears the Fido address of 5:7331/12 is Erik Rowberg. The node started up with ten initial users, but numerous others are expected to join shortly.

In addition to supplying the consultant for installation of the node and training of the systems operator and initial users, PADIS' CABECA project is providing equipment for the system. The system is being managed by an Ad Hoc Users' Committee through a system of subscriptions and the assessment of training fees.

Internet e-mail users can reach the node at: sysop@marie.gn.apc.org or marie@elci.gn.apc.org.

MINISIS "H" presented
IDRC MINISIS Outreach Officer Mr. André Roberge visited PADIS from 29 May through 3 June to introduce PADIS staff to the use of version "H" of the Standard MINISIS Application (SMA). PADIS is a test site for the Beta version of the software.

In addition to training PADIS staff, Mr. Roberge demonstrated the new version to other MINISIS users in Ethiopia, including the Ethiopian Science and Technology Commission, the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs, the Ministry of Industry and the Geological Survey Office of the Ministry of Mines and Energy.

MINISIS is a generalized database application adapted to the end user and capable of quickly storing, organizing, retrieving, reporting, manipulating and importing/exporting any kind of textual data. Its features include a wide range of language choice, flexible database management system, tools to facilitate data entry and modification and powerful retrieval capability.

In November 1994 PADIS will attend a meeting at IDRC headquarters in Ottawa to discuss policy and technical aspects of its dissemination in the Africa region. It is expected to be released for general use in the Africa region in early 1995.

Further details on MINISIS "H" are available from PADIS or from IDRC/ISS, PO Box 8500, Ottawa Canada K1G 3HP; fax: +1(613) 236-6163. CABECA missions to West Africa

CABECA West Africa coordinators Bob Barad and Moussa Fall undertook a mission to Burkina Faso, Cote d'Ivoire and Senegal from 16 February through 7 March 1994.

The purposes of the mission were to seek partners for CABECA operations in West Africa and to set a course for future operations in the West Africa subregion.

In Burkina Faso the major contact was with the UNDP-funded Sahelian Information which aims to facilitate information exchange within and among NGO umbrella institutions in Senegal, Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger. Demonstrations were mounted to familiarize SPONG, the SIS affiliate in Burkina Faso, with FIDOnet technology and its advantages for SIS.

In Cote d'Ivoire the primary objective was to establish cooperative linkages with the African Development Bank (ADB) and enlist their active support and cooperation for the CABECA project as the ADB is an organizations that is acutely aware of the need for improved communications in africa.

In Senegal the team worked together on technical improvements for the Senegal FidoNet node based at Enda-Tiers Monde, where Moussa Fall is the systems operator. This node which serves more than 70 users in Senegal, Gambia and Burkina Faso is the most active FidoNet node in West Africa. The team also met with African Regional Centre for Technology and the Senegal National Scientific and Technical Documentation Centre (CNDST) in collaboration with CABECA.

One of the overall themes of the mission was pursuit of an intra-West African network topology.

Copies of the full mission report are available upon request from PADIS. CABECA training in Ethiopia

CABECA conducted a two-day workshop at UNECA headquarters in Addis Ababa from 25-26 February to introduce the staff of twelve non-governmental organizations working in Ethiopia to techniques of electronic communication. Following the workshop, more than 15 non-governmental organizations entered their subscriptions to the PADISnet node.

On 15 March CABECA project officer Lishan Adam conducted a sensitization workshop to sensitize top level management of the Ministry of Mines and Energy in Ethiopia to the possibilities offered by electronic networking. More than 32 managers attended.

African Studies gopher

The University of Pennsylvania has set up an electronic information board on African Studies available through the WorldWideWeb, which contains bibliographies, conferences, current events, newsletters and listings of job opportunities, among other information. It also has materials in a separate section from PADIS and its "Hornet" bulletin board. Users can access it through gopher.upenn.edu. Those interested can send information contributions or request more details from Ali Dinar, African Studies Program, University of Pennsylvania, 418 University Museum, Philadelphia PA 19104-6398 USA; Internet e-mail: aadinar@mail.sas.upenn.edu.

Agricultural information by e-mail
Librarians and researchers in Africa with access to electronic mail can send reference requests to the National Agricultural Library (USA) for searching. Searches are conducted free of charge unless they require accessing commercial online databases or take more than an hour of a librarian's time.

The service is available to both the private as well as the public sector internationally.

The Internet e-mail address is: jfornes@nalusda.gov. More information on the service is available by traditional means from the Reference Branch, Room 111, National Agricultural Library, 10301 Baltimore Boulevard, Beltsville, MC 20705-2351 USA; fax: +1(301) 504-7098; tel. +1(301) 504-5204.

Going online
Institutions in Africa looking for ways to increase access to their databases by going online may wish to consider the experiences of the National Agricultural Library (USA) with regard to its AGRICOLA database. The report on these experiences examines the way in which a system was devised to support diverse end user needs and accommodate widely varying user searching strengths.

Copies of the report can be obtained by downloading the report entitled "AGRICOLA across the Internet - User Needs" via the Internet from the NAL gopher: gopher.nalusda.gov, or by writing to Claudia Weston, Database Administration Branch, Room 003, National Agricultural Library, USDA, 10301 Baltimore Boulevard, Beltsville MD 20705-2351; fax +1(301) 504-7473.

Technology Fact Sheets
Under a grant from the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the Board on Science and Technology for International Development is preparing a series of fact sheets on information and communication technologies for Africa. Prepared expressly for African audiences and bearing African resource constraints in mind, the sheets are an excellent introduction to many essential aspects of information technology.

The first ten sheets include an introduction to the series, glossary of frequently used computer terms, hardware components, peripherals, electronic communications, Internet primer, navigating the Internet, Fidonet, CD-ROM and desktop publishing. Copies of individual sheets or of the whole series to date may be obtained by writing to Ms. Wendy White, BOSTID Information Services Network, National Research Council, 2101 Constitution Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20418 USA; fax: (+1(202) 334-2027; Internet e-mail: wwhite@nas.edu. Copies may also be obtained by writing to PADIS at the address given in the box on page one.

Publications

Third DAI CD-ROM
The third edition of the DAI CD-ROM of development activity information is now available from the Coordinating Unit for INDIX of IDRC. The disk contains data on development projects and other activities contributed by United Nations specialised agencies, OECD, IDRC, USAID, CIDA, the Japan International Cooperation Agency and the World Bank, among others. A single copy is US$250; discounts are made for additional copies. However, nonprofit organizations in developing countries may request a copy free of change.

Work on the CD-ROM is coordinated by the Informal Study Group on the Exchange of Development Information, a coalition of development aid agencies interested in sharing information about their activities with each others and with developing countries.

Any organization which contributes its data to INDIX will receive a free copy of that edition.

More information or requests for the disk can be sent to Mary Campbell, Coordinating Unit for INDIX, IDRC, P.O. Box 8500,, Ottawa, Ontario Canada K1G 3H9; fax:+1 (613) 563-3858; Internet e-mail: indix@idrc.ca.

Sustainable Development information
The Office of Sustainable Development of the United States Agency for International Development has published vol. 1, no.l of SD Abstracts which highlights publications by USAID and its collaborators in the fields of agribusiness, agriculture, economic, environment/natural resources and health among other fields. Documents featured are available on microfiche or in papercopy at low prices.

Among publications featured in the first issue were "Agricultural Policy and Technology Options in Malawi: Modeling Responses and Outcomes in the Shallholder Subsector,"

Journals to library schools
Library schools and their libraries in Africa experiencing difficulties in maintaining subscriptions to professional library journals may profit from a new programme sponsored by the International Federation for Information and Documentation (FID). Among the journals available are College and Research Libraries, Special Libraries and Database.

Library schools and their libraries in Africa may contact Ms. Ruth Pagell, Associate Director, Lippincott Library of the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Pa 19104-6207 USA; tel. +1(215) 898-5922; fax:+1 (215) 898-2261; Internet e-mail: pagell@wilma.wharton.upenn.edu.

CAB Correction
In PADIS Newsletter vol. 8, no. 4 (1993) an article on AgECONCD, a new CD-ROM database produced by CAB International, stated incorrectly that the database superseded the printed journals World Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology Abstracts and Rural Development Abstracts. These two journals are still being issued in both print and floppy disk format. The AgECONCD consists of all records from the CAB ABSTRACTS database (dating back to 1973) relevant to the economic and social aspects of agriculture, forestry, food and the related natural environment worldwide, plus third world rural development. PADIS regrets the error.

News and Views

Measuring Information Impact
Many information professionals regularly utter the truism that "information is an invaluable resource for development" without being able to give tangible substantiation for their statement. Especially in these times of decreasing resources for information work in Africa, it is vital to make a strong case for the importance of access to and utilization of information.

The International Development Research Centre (IDRC) and Dr. Michel J. Ménou, internationally known information expert residing in France, have been working since 1992 on how to measure the impact of information on development. The work began with an international computer conference (from April-November 1992) and was followed by a post-conference workshop (Nairobi, November 1993) and the publication of the proceedings of that conference and outcome of the first phase of the project, under the title Measuring the Impact of Information on Development. Copies of that volume edited by Michel Ménou, are available from IDRC, PO Box 8500, Ottawa ON Canada K1G 3H9.

IDRC has now embarked on a series of case studies to investigate further the preliminary findings of the project. Among those to be undertaken in Africa is one based at PADIS, which centres on measuring the impact of electronic communications in Africa using the PADIS project on "Capacity building for electronic communication in Africa" as a model. It is expected to start in 1995. The second Africa case study will be based at the University on Botswana and will investigate the impact of information provision for rural development. More information on the case studies is available from Mr. Ronald Archer at IDRC at the above address: Internet e-mail: rarcher@idrc.ca.

Two of Dr. Ménou's 1994 papers which review the project and its conceptual base are available upon request from PADIS at the address on p. 1. They are "From Data to Wisdom: does Information Technology contribute to Gross National Happiness" and "The Impact of Information: Definitions and Measurements."

Sullivan address
The Reverend Dr. Leon H. Sullivan, Chairman of the African-African American Summit, addressed the twenty-ninth session of the Economic Commission for Africa Conference of Ministers responsible for economic and social development and planning meeting in Addis Ababa in May 1994 on the topic, "The Emergence of a new Africa: Proscription and Prescription." Among the topics he discussed was massive debt cancellation for sub- Saharan Africa tied to education and responsibility. Copies of the address are available upon request from PADIS.

New ISO Codes
The International Standardization Organization maintenance agency secretariat has issued codes for new countries. For Africa, of note is Eritrea (ERI). The full list and the accompanying currency codes can be obtained from PADIS.

The Failed State in Africa
Arguing that decentralization is the key to effective development in Africa, Dele Oluwu and James Wunsch maintain in their edited book The Failure of the Centralized State: Institutions and Self Governance in Africa that the economic institutions that make a free market work do not now exist in Africa. The book is published by Westview Press (USA).

Software Engineering
Many developing countries have seen software engineering as an entry into export-led development. However, domestic markets are essential to provide field testing for the products. A report on this topic "Software: an Engineering Industry: Need for Developing a Domestic Market", emanating from a 1991 UNDP seminar on this topic held in New Delhi, is available from PADIS.

Make a Date

Texas Conference
The Council on Information for Sustainable Development (CISD) will hold its first international conference on "Information for Sustainable Development" in Dallas, Texas (USA) November 1995 on the theme "Celebrating the Right to Know for the Less Developed Countries." Anyone interested in participating, presenting papers or setting up an exhibit is welcome to do so. Detailed information is available from Dr. Seyoum S. Zegiorgis, Prairie View A&M University, P.O. Box 5030, Prairie View, Texas 77446 USA; tel: +1(409) 857-2612;fax:+1(409) 857-2755; Internet e-mail: Z115SZ@tamvm1.tamu.edu

First international CDS/ISIS Congress
The Colombian Association of micro CDS/ISIS users (ASOISIS) is organizing the first international CDS/ISIS Congress to take place in Bogota, Colombia from 22-27 May 1995 on the occasion of the tenth year of existence of the package. The Congress is sponsored by UNESCO/PGI Caracas and the Colombian Ministry of Education.

The Congress plans to be a forum for the exchange of experience on the use of the software and for establishing contacts with producers as well as system developers from the world over. It also aims to define the lines of future developments in CDS/ISIS (theoretical and technological issues, diversification of users and training requirements, distribution of future versions of the software and user-developed applications).

Conference organizers also plan to produce a CD ROM of CDS/ISIS databases. Further information can be obtained from: Asociacion Colombiana de Usuarios de CDS/ISIS (ASOISIS), Apartado Aereo 78130, Carrera 22, 86A-70 Santafe de Bogota Colombia; tel.: +(571) 622 2631; fax: +(571) 622 4570. +(57.1) 218 5071.

PADIS Calendar

New from PAddev, New Entries in PADdev
The following are some recent entries into the PADdev bibliographic data base on social and economic aspects of development in Africa. New entries in PADdev are printed as a current bulletin for subscribers to DEVINDEX-AFRICA. Microfiches or photocopies of the documents are available upon request from PADIS at the address on p.1.

Quarcoo, Philip K. (IDEP, Dakar SN)
Structural adjustment programmes in Africa: experience of the CFA Franc Zone countries - how can we do it better? how can we improve it?. 10p. ref. 1994. SAPES Trust, Harare, ZW. Conference on economic reform and liberalization: perspectives from African experiences, Harare, ZW, 12-15 Jun 1994.

Examines the key elements in the adjustment strategy of Franc Zone African countries in order to identify the critical factors in that experiences; reviews the main characteristics of the Zone emphasizing the unique relationship in the monetary union. Examines and evaluates the main elements of the adjustment strategy before and behind the devaluation and the accompanying measures and outlook for the future.

/Devaluation*/, /monetary area*/, /structural adjustment*/, /currencies/, /convertibility/, /France/, /Africa/. ISN: 10548

Ddumba-Ssentamu, J. (Makerere University, Kampala UG) Structural adjustment in Uganda. 42+9p. graphs, refs., tables. Jun 1994. International Center for Economic Growth Sub-regional Conference of Correspondent Institutes in Eastern and Southern Africa on Economic Reform and Liberalization: perspectives from African experiences, Harare, ZW, 12-15 Jun 1994.

Highlights the structural adjustment programmes (SAPs) in Uganda since 1981, which are grouped into the Obote II era (1981-1984) and the NRM period (1987-1993). Explains the 1981 economic and financial programmes to halt the deterioration of the economy, revive production, restore confidence in the shillings, re-establish monetary discipline and lay a firm foundation for sustained recovery. Also discusses the Economic Recovery Program (1987-1993) supported by IMF and examines its impact on economic growth, saving and investment, monetary policy, fiscal performance, external sector of the economy, exchange rates, foreign exchange reserves, and external debt.

/Structural adjustment*/, /economic recovery/, /economic growth/, /industrial production/, /agricultural production/, /monetary policy/, /fiscal policy/, /foreign exchange reserves/, /indebtedness/, /Uganda/. ISN: 10514

Elbadawi, Ibrahim A. (African Research Consortium, Nairobi KE)
The structure of incentives, the external environment and agricultural supply response in Sub Saharan Africa. 21+10p. 1994. SAPES Trust, Harare, ZW. Conference on economic reform and liberalization: perspectives from African experiences, Harare, ZW, 12-15 Jun 1994.

Studies the aggregate and desegregated trend of the structure of incentives for African agricultural exports, the relative influences of economy-wide and sector-specific policy interventions and evaluates the link between macroeconomic and sectoral reforms in the context of SAP. Assesses the extent and policy implications of the external environment affecting the economies of Sub Saharan Africa, including the demand constraints facing some of Africa's principal export crops, especially cocoa; reviews the evidence on the farm sector supply response to relative price increases or decreases in Africa.

/Agricultural products*/, /exports*/, /structural adjustment*/, /demand and supply/, /crops/, /cocoa/, /prices/, /Africa/. ISN: 10551

PADIS Calendar, July-September 1994

6-19 July       Nouakchott, Mauritania   Advisory services mission 
15-20 July      Brazzaville, Congo       UNECA High level mission 
3-7 August      Harare, Zimbabwe         Zimbabwe Book Fair   
24-25 August    Ibadan, Nigeria          ARCIS international advisory board meeting
31 August-1 September Cairo, Egypt       Global POPIN Co-ordinating Committee
5-13 September Cairo, Egypt              International Conference of Population and  Development
21-22 September Frascati, Italy          Telespazio meeting on space technology
29-30 September  Cambridge, England      AITEC African information technology forum for sustained    
 
development

Editor: Dr. Ali B. Ali-Dinar, Ph.D.

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