NGO Development Activity Information Needs

NGO Development Activity Information Needs

Newsgroups: bit.listserv.devel-l Message-ID: <> Date: Mon, 28 Mar 1994 21:54:24 BST Reply-To: Simon White Sender: Technology Transfer in International Development Subject: Study of NGO Development Activity Information needs

*** INDIX-International Network for Development Information Exchange ***

In 1991, an informal grouping of information workers from development organisations met in Paris, France to discuss 2 main aims.

1. Creating a common format for the exchange of information on development activities.

2. Making agreements on how to exchange information on development activities.

Agreement was reached on the format for the exchange of development information. This sets down fields for identifying and describing development activities (development activities is a wide term referring to any activities related to social and economic development).

Some organisations also agreed to send development activity information from their computer systems to the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) in Canada for collection on to a compact disk, or CD- ROM. This became known as the Development Activity Information (DAI) CD-ROM.

2 editions of this disk have already been produced and the 3rd edition is due in April 1994. This will contain some 95000 records from the United Nations, the OECD Development Assistance Committee, World Bank, US Agency for International Development, Canadian International Development Agency, the International Development Research Centre, the World Bank and several others organisations.

In some cases, these submissions are collections of data from others organisations, so many agencies' activities are represented within these records.

The disk will be updated every 6 months. It also contains the software needed to read or select records.

At a second meeting in September 1993, I was asked to find out how much interest there is from smaller and/or non-government organisations in a) exchanging information on development projects or b) using project data contained in the DAI CD-ROM.

*** Copies of the DAI CD-ROM *** Any non-profit organisation based in a developing country can obtain one FREE copy of the DAI CD-ROM. For international organisations or those based in developed countries, the cost is US$250 per copy or US$150 each for multiple copies.

To obtain one or more copies, contact: Mary Campbell INDIX Coordinating Unit at IDRC, Ottawa, Canada Fax no: 613 563 3858 InterNet E-mail address: Mary can also provide further general information about INDIX and the Common Exchange Format.

*** Survey Questionnaire *** If you take time to answer the questionnaire that follows, you will be sent a copy of the report on the results of this survey. The purpose is to help INDIX make its activities more relevant to non government and smaller development organisations.

The questionnaire is being distributed via E-mail networks world wide and by mail/fax, so the results of the survey should be interesting for all those taking part. The report will be available in June 1994.

Please edit the text of the questionnaire and send your reply to me at Internet address:

or print the text, fill in your answers and send your reply to: Simon White, 18 Westlecot Road, Swindon, SN1 4HB, UK

Please reply by APRIL 30 1994.

**************************************************** QUESTIONNAIRE ON USE/EXCHANGE OF DEVELOPMENT INFORMATION

Please fill in your answers to these questions by editing the file you have downloaded, then return to: Simon White at InterNet address:

Please note: `Development' here means social and economic development but also relief/disaster initiatives and development research.

*** Identification *** 1. Your name

2. Your role/job title

3. Name of your organisation

4. Address Postal:

E-Mail: Fax No:

5. Are you willing for these details to be included in the report based on this survey? YES or NO

6. Would you like to receive an e-mail summary or the full report by mail? YES or NO

(Please note that your name, and the name and address of your organisation will not be included in the report unless you give your permission here)

7. What is the purpose of your organisation? What development activities is it involved in?

*** Exchanging Information *** 8. With which organisations would you like to exchange information about development activities? List types of Organisation (eg non-government, government, Southern, Northern based, aid donors, small, large, community based, international,

....) List Sectors of interest (eg agriculture, labour rights, appropriate technology....)

9. What would you use this information for? (eg Comparisons, Research, Targeting funding applications...)

*** Current Information Networks *** 10. Which organisations do you already swap development activity information with? 11. How do you share information with other organisations? (eg meetings, seminars, electronic conferences, mail....) 12. Which networks for information exchange do you already belong to?

*** Development activity records *** 13. How do you store records of your development activities? (eg Paper files/computer databases) 14. How many development activity records do you hold, approximately?

15. What information do you keep on each project? eg title, annual budget, descriptions, keywords,

...... *** Computer Technology *** 16. Does your organisation have a CD-ROM reader? YES or NO

17. If not, can you easily get access to one? YES or NO

(If you would like to get a copy of the DAI CD-ROM, please contact INDIX Coordinating Group at IDRC - see first page)

If you do not have a CD-ROM reader: 18. Would you still want to use the information from the DAI CD-ROM? YES or NO

19. What form would you like to receive this information in? (eg Printed reports, computer disk, ....., please specify) 20. Do you have a computer database of projects? YES or No

21. If so, what software do you use? (eg Oracle, DBase, Cardbox)

22. Would you be able to change your computerised data to another format before exchanging it or having it included in the DAI CD-ROM? YES or No

*** Local Focus *** 23. Can you suggest an organisation you are in contact with (government or non-government) that has good technology and skills and which you would trust to act as a focus for the DAI CD-ROM and other information exchange initiatives? *** INDIX Meeting *** 24. Would you be interested in an international meeting with other development related organisations to discuss information exchange? YES or NO

25. What would you want such a meeting to discuss/achieve?

*** Referrals *** 26. Do you know other organisations who would be interested in exchanging development information? Please give details:

27. Any other Comments

Thanks for taking part in this survey. Please copy this questionnaire to other interested organisations or pass on their names and addresses for me to send them details.

Editor: Ali B. Ali-Dinar
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