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Thursday, February 11, 2010

Human development database

NEW YORK, USA, 11 February 2010 – DevInfo is a database system that harnesses the power of advanced information technology to compile and disseminate data on human development. The latest version – 6.0 – was officially launched in 2009 and is the most powerful and user-friendly version to date.

DevInfo 6.0 completed its global, region-by-region roll out last week in Siem Reap, Cambodia.

DevInfo allows users to organize, store, access, display, monitor and analyze standardized human development data in a uniform way, categorized by indicator, time period, geographic area or source.

Whether sharing data at the country level, across government departments, with UN agencies or development partners, DevInfo makes it easy to make informed, evidence-based decisions about development issues.

Reports and presentations

National statistics offices, UN agencies, donors, non-governmental organizations and civil society can use the system to produce tables, graphs and maps for inclusion in reports, presentations and advocacy materials.

The software supports both standard indicators – such as the Millennium Development Goals – and user-defined indicators in line with national priorities.

UNICEF manages DevInfo with the support of the United Nations Development Group. The software is distributed royalty-free to all end users. Thousands of current users contributed their insights and experiences to the DevInfo 6.0 development process.

User-friendly interface

The intuitive, user-friendly DevInfo interface provides straightforward navigation. Users can browse data in several different ways, while other techniques allow ‘drilling down’ into the details of each data value in the system.

A new Data Wizard allows first-time users to generate tables, maps and graphs in just three easy steps.

DevInfo 6.0 features powerful data presentation methods, enhanced web collaboration and extended mapping features. The software offers a range of tools to present disaggregated data by sub-national administrative units and by sex, location, age and other socio-economic dimensions. DevInfo 6.0 also includes enhanced reporting features, easy-to-generate, animated presentation objects – such as flipbook and video options – and advanced data analysis tools like animated bubble plots.

In addition, a new data exchange module introduces powerful data management utilities, allowing users to import data into the DevInfo format from industry-standard statistical software packages.

DevInfo initiatives worldwide

Presently, more than 275 adaptations of DevInfo are being used in over 130 countries; there are an estimated 24,000 trained DevInfo users around the world.

Beyond these national and regional adaptations, dozens of global organizations rely on the DevInfo database technology to disseminate the results of their work:

MDG Info 2009 is a customized version of DevInfo providing wide access to the official Millennium Development Goals data set maintained by the UN Statistics Division. The website,, allows stakeholders to access key human development data on all UN Member States.

CME Info – Child Mortality Estimate Info – is available at Powered by DevInfo technology, it allows users to track the progress of any country in reducing infant and child mortality.

MICS Compiler, powered by DevInfo, allows users to search indicators across UNICEF-sponsored Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys, which are conducted worldwide and based on nationally representative samples. MICS Compiler indicators use standard definitions for international comparability and can be found at, the one-stop source for UNICEF statistics on children and women.

CensusInfo, at, a software package adapted from DevInfo database technology, was launched in 2009 to help countries disseminate census data. Developed jointly by the United Nations Statistics Division, UNICEF and UNFPA, CensusInfo provides a method to organize, store and display data in a uniform format to facilitate census data-sharing at the country level across government departments and UN agencies.

Gender Info 2010 contains the official UN MDG data – disaggregated by gender – for more than 50 indicators, providing over 300,000 data values. Gender Info 2010, at, is the result of an Interagency effort supported by the Expert Group on MDGs, including: UNFPA, The World Bank, UNDESA/DAW, UNIFEM, ILO and UNICEF.

To learn more about the impact of DevInfo on people’s lives – and to obtain a free copy of DevInfo 6.0 software – please visit
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On course for a better tomorrow in Cambodia

The children of Chumkriel in Cambodia are out of sight but not out of mind for Dubbo and Narromine residents who continue to fundraise for their future.

In mid-2009 the volunteers travelled to Chumkriel, which former Narromine woman Joselyn Barber has “taken under her wing”.

In the poverty-stricken community the Australians built a toilet block, taught youngsters to wash their hands, and offered expert advice to the Chumkriel Language School and Learning Centre on matters including its English curriculum and financial management.

In just weeks they broke down the barrier of distrust to become welcome visitors and contributors to the recovery from Pol Pot’s brutal regime.

Since returning to western NSW, the group has directed its efforts towards raising cash to help buy a block of land in Chumkriel where a much-needed new learning centre will be built by volunteers in May and October.

On March 7 it is teaming up with Narromine Rotary members in running a charity golf day.

Narromine’s Vicki Gainsford says all are welcome to attend, with the proceeds going “entirely into securing the block of land for the new classroom”.

“Cambodia’s population is predominately very young, very poor and uneducated, because of the slaughter during Pol Pot’s regime,” she said.

“One-in-five children will die of dysentery or related diseases.

“They are a beautiful people and they are so appreciative of the help we are giving them. We can give them a chance in life.”

Ms Gainsford was a member of the group that travelled to Chumkriel last year, as was Mark Horton of Dubbo Rotary Club.

“Mark informs me that Dubbo Rotary is still trying to raise several thousand dollars ... to seal the deal on the block of land,” Ms Gainsford said.

Dubbo and district residents are being encouraged to travel to Narromine next month and take part in the fundraising effort, a two-person ambrose.

The cost of $20 includes a barbecue lunch with “lots of prizes and fun guaranteed”.

Joselyn Barber is helping the people of Chumkriel “to realise the dream of gaining an education and learning English,” Ms Gainsford said.

“With Jos and Rotary driving the engine, we can be assured that no money is being wasted and Jos is there to see the project through to fruition,” she said.

For more information or to find a golfing partner, call 688 90115.

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