Your search found 23 Results

  1. 1

    The new information technologies and women: essential reflections. [La nueva tecnología de la información y la mujer: reflexiones fundamentales]

    Bonder G

    Santiago, Chile, United Nations, Economic Commission for Latin America [ECLAC], 2003 Jul. 56 p. (CEPAL - SERIE Mujer y Desarrollo No. 39)

    Although in Latin America and the Caribbean there is growing concern to take into account the issue of gender in public policies, this process is still embryonic and fragmented in the case of economic and technological policies. The Women and Development Unit of ECLAC is therefore implementing the project "Institutionalization of gender policies within ECLAC and sectoral ministries". The objective of this project is to strengthen technical policies, strategies, tools and capacities, both within ECLAC and in selected countries of the region, in order to encourage equity between men and women in the process and benefits of development, especially with regard to economic and labour policies. One of the activities of the project, organized by the Women and Development Unit together with the International Trade Division of ECLAC and the Centre for Women's Studies and Social Gender Relations of the University of São Paulo, was a meeting of experts on "Globalization, technological change and gender equity" in the city of São Paulo, Brazil, on 5 and 6 November 2001. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the most relevant aspects of the opportunities and restrictions imposed by the processes of globalization and technological change, with the aim of proposing areas for research, as well as an agenda of public policies that would help to achieve equity. This document was presented as a background study for the discussion at the meeting of experts. It is clear from the text that the new technologies are taking us into a dizzy time of new exclusions, and that in addition to being a material reality they are also a discursive product with effects on institutions, public policies and individuals. The study reviews an extensive amount of theoretical literature, as well as most of the research concerning the inclusion and relationship of women in connection with the new information technologies and skills. This review identifies the major obstacle to reinforcing the potential positive impacts of the new technologies as the lack of information on how they, and especially computers, can help policies, and also individual women, to achieve their goals. It is also shown that we are dealing with two disconnected concepts: the information society and the information economy, and the gender perspective is presented as a means of linking them. As for the impact on social and gender equity, and the current digital divide, according to this document research is needed on more than access alone. There is patently a need for policies to regulate and democratize the new information and knowledge technologies, and it is important to analyze the collective imaginary that is being constructed around them and the different forms of subjectivity that the Internet is encouraging, within a perspective of the future and of changes in social relations. (author's)
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  2. 2

    Who benefits? Measuring the differential impact of new technologies.

    Mitter S

    In: Missing links: gender equity in science and technology for development, [compiled by] United Nations. Commission on Science and Technology for Development. Gender Working Group. Ottawa, Canada, International Development Research Centre [IDRC], 1995. 219-42.

    This document (the 10th chapter in a UN Gender Working Group book on the overlay of science and technology, sustainable human development, and gender issues) highlights how new technologies are improving the quality and quantity of women's modern sector employment, identifies the gender differential effects of these technologies, explores the socioeconomic reasons for such differentials, and points out where policy-makers can intervene to redress gender imbalances. Discussion of the relevance and definition of new technologies includes a look at trade flows and technology transfer. Description of the impact of technological changes 1) considers whether biotechnology is a friend or enemy of women; 2) highlights the effects of computer-aided technology on automated manufacturing, the organization of work, and information technology in the service industries; and 3) looks at the telecommunication revolution and distant working as well as the relocation of data-entry jobs. After an assessment of women in the decision-making process, the chapter explores the impact of new technologies on small- and medium-sized enterprises, on labor standards, and on training for corporate jobs. Finally, the chapter offers a research agenda to guide policy-makers, outlines the role and concerns of UN agencies, and describes a new research initiative that is focusing on improving the advocacy skills of organizations of women workers by giving them access to key information.
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  3. 3

    A report of the NGO Advocacy Network for Women (KIDOG) on its participation in the United Nations Conference on Human Settlements, HABITAT II NGO Forum, Istanbul, Turkey, May 30 - June 14, 1996.

    Futures Group International. POLICY Project

    Washington, D.C., Futures Group International, POLICY Project, 1996. [2], 9, [12] p. (USAID Contract No. CCP-3078-C-00-5023-00)

    This report describes the participation of the Turkish NGO (nongovernmental organization) Advocacy Network for Women (KIDOG) in the UN's Habitat II NGO Forum, which took place May 30-June 14, 1996. KIDOG originated in the participation of 11 NGOs in a two-day advocacy workshop sponsored by The Futures Group International in Turkey in July 1995. In the fall of 1995, the 11 NGOs requested technical assistance in networking, advocacy, and strategic planning. In March 1996, eight additional groups joined KIDOG during another advocacy workshop. Using participatory techniques, KIDOG members decided that their participation in the NGO Forum would involve 1) provision of information about the status of women and reproductive health in Turkey and 2) seeking support for the Network agenda and an increase in Network membership. KIDOG's contributions to the NGO Forum included distributing KIDOG booklets and posters, developing a computer-based presentation on women and reproductive health, sponsoring an exhibit booth, hosting site visits, and conducting workshops on the following topics: 1) NGO initiatives in reproductive health, 2) domestic violence, 3) informal education for women, and 4) sustainable development. When KIDOG members evaluated their participation in the NGO Forum, they agreed that KIDOG's most important contribution was serving as a model for collaborative work, which is a new phenomenon in Turkey. KIDOG members plan to continue their organized advocacy activities.
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  4. 4

    Commission on Population and Development considers information issues.

    ASIA-PACIFIC POPIN BULLETIN. 1995 Mar; 7(1):6-8.

    At the meeting of the United Nations Commission on Population and Development during February 21 to March 2, 1995, population information received much attention. Particular emphasis was given to the recent rapid expansion of the Population Information Network (POPIN) which coordinates regional and national population activities. POPIN had been established in the early 1980s, and with new funding in 1994 it was able to expand. The POPIN Gopher was established on the Internet, the electronic information superhighway. It includes journals, newsletters, bibliographic and demographic data banks, and statistical tables. The POPIN Gopher was heavily used during the International Conference on Population and Development at Cairo in September 1994. POPIN's primary objective was to increase awareness and knowledge of population issues in agreement with the Cairo Action Program. The representative of Pakistan related that an increasing portion of the national budget was devoted population issues with information, education, and communication being a priority. The documents of the Commission meeting were also disseminated through Internet. The Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) also carried out collaborative research, provided technical assistance, organized training courses and workshops, and disseminated population information during 1994. A representative of Population Communications International disclosed that an information clearing house had been established in New York City for dissemination of information to governments, nongovernmental organizations, and the UN. The director of UNFPA stated that an interagency task force had been formed to monitor the progress in the implementation of the Program of Action of ICPD in the fields of health, basic education, and women's empowerment. Other tasks of the Commission were also discussed, i.e., advising UN bodies and devising a work program in population for 1996-97.
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  5. 5

    Installation of a computerized EPI information system, Turkey, May 8-19, 1989.

    Wilson E

    [Unpublished] 1989. [2], 10, [30] p. (USAID Contract No. DPE-5927-C-00-5068-00)

    The Turkish Ministry of Health, Primary Health Care Directorate, Expanded Program on Immunization Division (MOH/EPI), requested technical assistance in the installation of a Computerized EPI Information System (CEIS), which the Resources for Child Health (REACH) Project provided to the MOH/EPI from May 8-May 19, 1989, in Ankara, Turkey. A CEIS was installed to enable the MOH/EPI to process routine vaccination and disease surveillance data and to feed back data to the provinces on EPI vaccine coverage, tetanus toxoid vaccine coverage, and communicable disease incidence. The CEIS provides a standardized format for data entry, report generation, and graph production. It uses FoxBASE+ for the data entry and report production and LOTUS 1-2-3 to produce the graphs. All of the reports, graphs, data entry screens, menus, and prompts were translated into Turkish. Coverage data and disease incidence data for 1988 were entered while the consultant was in Turkey. It was recommended that the MOH/EPI validate the coverage data entered by comparing it with the data contained in its LOTUS 1-2-3 files. The MOH/EPI should enter at least two more years of historical data for both cases and deaths and coverage. This will permit the evaluation of trends in coverage and disease incidence and allow the comparison of intra-year coverage rates and disease incidence. The MOH/EPI should enter current data on a monthly basis and test all of the reporting and graphing capabilities of the system. All of the MDs in the MOH/EPI unit should be trained in the operation of the CEIS. Another technical, assistance visit to Turkey should be made in August 1989 to determine how the CEIS is being used, to correct any flaws in existing programs, and to provide some enhancements identified by the MOH/EPI.
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  6. 6

    Use of rapid assessment procedures for evaluation by UNICEF.

    Pearson R; Kessler S

    In: RAP: Rapid Assessment Procedures. Qualitative methodologies for planning and evaluation of health related programmes, edited by Nevin S. Scrimshaw and Gary R. Gleason. Boston, Massachusetts, International Nutrition Foundation for Developing Countries, 1992. 387-401.

    UNICEF has been using rapid assessment procedures (RAP) in evaluation work for 10 years. RAP is an approach which uses both qualitative and quantitative tools. RAP is action-oriented, investigative, process-oriented, holistic, efficient, and involved in the community. In the 1970s RAP grew out of the need to interact with the rural poor and people in slums by designing development programs. The use of RAP in evaluation in UNICEF included annual reviews of programs. In UNICEF, a RAP exercise includes the use of techniques derived from anthropology: focus group discussions, observation, and unstructured interviews, whereby anthropological investigation is condensed from the normal 2 years to 2-3 weeks available for RAP. Other techniques can also be used: participatory mapping, analysis of satellite images, household surveys, and group discussions. Fieldwork for a UNICEF RAP evaluation takes 3-4 weeks, which should follow the general principles of evaluation. The evaluation team must be experienced and impartial with good communication skills. RAP evaluations can encourage participatory development processes in projects lacking built-in participatory elements. RAP evaluations have been influenced by advances in computer technology and the availability of photocopiers because of the quick turnaround times required. In an evaluative RAP, data collection methods include: 1) review and analysis of other data on the subject; 2) group interviews (focus group meetings) or community meetings; 3) observation; 4) interviews with key informants; 5) cost analysis; 6) quantitative data collected at community-based sentinel sites (e.g., Center for Tropical Disease Research, Acapulco, Mexico). Dissemination encompasses written draft recommendations and findings produced for steering committee members after reaching consensus and then writing a final report of 15-25 pages for decision makers. Constraints to the application of RAP have to do with absence of decision makers, political factors, and cultural problems. The use of RAP in UNICEF project evaluations has proved to be less expensive and time-consuming than classical methods.
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  7. 7

    Harbin municipal government experiment on family planning management information system.

    Gao ST

    In: Monitoring and evaluating family planning programmes in the 1990s, [compiled by] United Nations. Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific [ESCAP]. Bangkok, Thailand, ESCAP, 1990. 155-67. (Asian Population Studies Series No. 104; ST/ESCAP/945; UNFPA Project No. RAS/86/P09)

    The Harbin Municipal Government administers 7 districts and 2 counties with a total population of 4,020,000 including 1,050,000 women in reproductive age in the northeastern province of Heilongjiang, China. In 1987 an experiment with a family planning (FP) management information system (MIS) was launched in collaboration with the Population Division of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and Pacific (ESCAP) at the Harbin Population Information Research Institute. The purpose was to upgrade manual information collection to a cohesive information and continuous monitoring system; to improve data collection capacity and utilization for statistical analysis; and to enhance FP services for couples. Specific goals included the establishment of regional (district/county) data bases; to develop MIS components for medicines, population forecasting, and surveys; to expand the data bases for women in reproductive age; and to replace floppy disk exchange with networking. The FP MIS contains the municipal MIS (statistical evaluations for districts to help decision making) and the district MIS (marriage, contraceptive use, parity, and socioeconomic information on women of reproductive age). The implementation started in early 1988; survey forms were designed and revised. In 1989 field implementation entailed marriage, birth and contraceptive histories of 16,000 couples each in an urban and rural unit. Training courses were organized on filling out FP forms. The input of data from 37,000 women took 45 days. The MIS experiment reduced staff workload and increased data utilization, speed, and quality; improved information feedback, the statistical system, and managerial competence. Further refinements of the computer system, technical staff, and family planning training are needed.
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  8. 8

    Networking of networks: a 1990s approach to information for development.

    ASIA-PACIFIC POPIN BULLETIN. 1992 Jun; 4(2):13-7.

    The ability to access and use information is increasingly becoming a crucial determinant of a country's ability to achieve sustainable socioeconomic development. Countries which are able to manage and utilize data and information have a competitive advantage over other nations. Countries which fail to tap into the growing global knowledge base, develop a complementary local knowledge base, promote the dissemination and use of knowledge, and invest in institutional and technical human capital will, however, simply remain or fall behind the competition. Many developing countries lack appropriate strategy, financial support for information centers and networks, timely adoption and use of new technology, adequate telecommunications infrastructure, and coordination at national and regional levels. Further, telecommunications services are costly, research on user group behavior is inadequate, few technically skilled people are available, and governments fail to recognize the importance of joining international information networks. Policy development, maternal-child health and family planning, and information, education, and communication are 3 of the most significant population issues worldwide. To best address these issues, international development agencies are urged to veer from providing capital and to directly support greater access to information and enhanced knowledge leading to sustainable national development. Thus far the UN has helped create global information systems in certain areas, and regional cooperative information systems are being developed. ESCAP has taken the lead in Asia and the Pacific. Gradually, population libraries and information centers are becoming computerized. Greater effort is recommended to recover costs for services and products. Further, donors and country organizations should stress that information is only useful as far as it is used.
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  9. 9
    Peer Reviewed

    ZOOM: a generic personal computer-based teaching program for public health and its application in schistosomiasis control.

    Martin GT; Yoon SS; Mott KE


    In 1989, staff at WHO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland developed teaching software that can be used on IBM-PC and IBM-compatible computers to train public health workers in schistosomiasis. They tested in several schools of public health. They then improve it by incorporating a schistosomiasis information file (stack) in ASCII file format and a routine to organize and present data. The program allows the addition of other stacks without abandoning the user interface and the instructor can change data in the stacks as needed. In fact, any text editor such as Word-Perfect can create a stack. This software teaching program (ZOOM) organizes and presents the information (Dr. Schisto). Dr. Schisto is divided into 8 chapters: introduction, epidemiology, parasitology, diagnostics, treatment, data analysis, primary health care, and global database. Users can command ZOOM to communicate in either English, French, Spanish, or Portuguese. Basic hardware requirements include MS-DOS, 8086 microprocessor, 512 Kbytes RAM, CGA or MGA screen, and 2 floppy disc drives. ZOOM can also configured itself to adapt to the hardware available. ZOOM and Dr. Schisto are public domain software and thus be copied and distributed to others. Each information stack has chapters each of which contains slides, subslides, text, graphics, and dBASE, Lotus or EpiInfo files. ZOOM has key words and an index file to access more information. It also can do user defined searches using Boolean logic. Since ZOOM can be used with any properly formatted data, it has the potential to become the standard for global information exchange and for computer assisted teaching purposes.
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  10. 10

    The collection, analysis and transmission of population policy data at the United Nations Secretariat.

    United Nations. Department of International Economic and Social Affairs. Population Division

    In: International transmission of population policy experience. Proceedings of the Expert Group Meeting on the International Transmission of Population Policy Experience, New York City, 27-30 June 1988, [compiled by] United Nations. Department of International Economic and Social Affairs. Population Division. New York, New York, United Nations, 1990. 21-39. (ST/ESA/SER.R/108)

    In order to illuminate the complex process of population policy research, this article describes how the UN Secretariat collects, analyzes, and transmits population policy data. The role of conducting population policy research falls under the UN's Population Commission and its substantiative secretariat, the Population Division of the Department of International Economic and Social Affairs. Providing a historical background, the article explains the gradual development of consensus as to the proper role of the UN with regards to population policy. While in 1948 the UN mandated the Population Commission to "arrange for studies and advise" on "policies designed to influence the size and structure of populations and changes therein," it was not until the late 1960s when population policy became a pressing issue. The paper goes on to detail the process of population policy research. Data collection depends on a combination of 2 factors: the number of countries or units of analysis and the specific issues under consideration. The paper explains that the Population Commission collects its data from 4 general sources: 1)government documents, intergovernmental documents, nongovernmental documents, and UN inquiries. Over the past 40 years, the Commission has developed 4 implicit principles concerning the analysis of data. The analysis should be neutral, comprehensive, global, and effective. In order to transmit population policy research, the Commission employs 3 major avenues: 1)UN published reports, documents, studies, etc.; 2: conferences, meetings, seminars, etc.; and 3)computer files. Following the description of the search process, the paper discusses key issues and concerns over this process. Examples of such concerns include the validity of results, issues of consistency and reliability, problems of definition, and the classification of government.
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  11. 11

    Report on organization and conduct of [Sub-Regional] Training Workshop on Census Cartography for English-Speaking Southern and Eastern African Countries. Nairobi, Kenya, 8-19 May, 1989.

    United Nations. Economic Commission for Africa

    [Unpublished] 1989. 9, [9] p. (ECA.STAT/CSAS.1/89/13; RAF/87/P03)

    A recent workshop was organized for the English-speaking countries of Southern and Eastern Africa to use remote sensing materials for census mapping. This included lectures on interpretation of aerial photographs and satellite imagery and its applications to census mapping. The participants were senior statisticians or cartographers in management positions in their countries. the subjects included fundamentals of map interpretation, a laboratory of topographic map reading and scale conversions, census cartography with the definition of census, roles of maps in the census, and planning a census mapping program. The pre- enumeration of cartographic programs and cartographic field work were also covered. The automation of census cartography with the use of micro-computers in the preparation of thematic maps and charts, the delineation and mapping of enumeration and supervision areas, and post- enumeration census mapping activities. This was followed by publication maps, satellite imagery and its uses in census mapping. A field demonstration was then conducted on satellite imagery interpretation and delineation. At the conclusion of the workshop and evaluation was done by questionnaire. The results indicated a need by the participants for more technical documentation on various aspects of computer mapping, especially on equipment, software, and material support. Computer mapping and the publication maps were considered by some as the most important part, and therefore would need additional technical expertise for implementation in their countries.
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  12. 12
    Peer Reviewed

    A micro-computer software for the analysis of menstrual diaries: the menstrual diary system.

    Pinol A; Machin D

    CONTRACEPTION. 1988 Aug; 38(2):157-63.

    A microcomputer software program called the Menstrual Diary System (MDS) is described which analyzes menstrual diaries by the reference period method, according to WHO guidelines. An IBM compatible microcomputer with floppy or hard disk, at least 256K of memory, and an MS-DOS 2.0 or later operating system is used. Menstrual data consist of entries labeling vaginal bleeding as absent, bleeding or spotting. There are optional parameters for the drive, path, and printer used by the system; user-defined symbols for bleeding patterns; screen characteristics; file management by date and length of data collection (maximum 380 days); and subject identifying information. A data management section permits data entry. The data analysis section follows the reference period method, allowing for within-subject analysis and between-subject analysis. Diary data entered in MDS can be transferred onto standard ASCII file to be used by other packages. Examples of output are provided.
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  13. 13

    Making do with less: the 1990 round of censuses in Sub-Saharan Africa.

    Crowley JG; Hardee-Cleaveland K

    [Unpublished] 1988. Presented at the Annual Meeting of the Population Association of America, New Orleans, Louisiana, April 21-23, 1988. [3], 23, [3] p.

    For sub-Saharan countries, population censuses are crucial in obtaining data about local areas, sociodemographic characteristics, and input for development and policy making. Most sub-Saharan countries cannot afford to fund censuses, and external assistance has been provided by UNFPA, the US, the United Kingdom, and France. The World Bank has recently become involved in supporting census work, and coordination between all these groups is critical. 5 critical areas for making effective use of scarce resources are: country commitment; improved donor coordination; management and planning; institutionalization of census capabilities; and improvement of production, dissemination, and use of census data. Country commitment is affected by fund shortages, and political sensitivities. Census work should depend on agricultural seasons, the school year, and migratory movements. Donor coordination in the areas of funding, data analysis, and technical assistance is important. Planning for future censuses should begin 2-3 years before the actual census date, and management of the census should include short-term training and technical assistance from donor countries. The institutionalization of census activities should address the weakest link in census work--data processing. Lengthy delays in processing data because of nonstandardized equipment, limited access, and lack of skilled personnel have hampered census efforts. A fully configured microcomputer system would also address this problem. Publication and dissemination of census data, sometimes delayed as much as 8 years, could be improved by the use of timely microcomputer reports of preliminary results. Attention to these 5 key areas will improve the 1990 round of censuses, and efficiently use the limited resources available.
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  14. 14

    Management information systems and microcomputers in primary health care: issues and challenges.

    Schware R

    In: Management information systems and microcomputers in primary health care, edited by Ronald G. Wilson, Barbara E. Echols, John H. Bryant, and Alexandre Abrantes. Geneva, Switzerland, Aga Khan Foundation, 1988. 17-20.

    A wide array of issues must be addressed if the development and use of management information system (MIS) and microcomputers are to improve management of primary health care (PHC) programs and increase the equity and cost-effectiveness of PHC. These issues include: specification of the purpose and objectives of MIS at community and district levels; distinquishing types of information required; the understanding of organizational issues that must be resolved as a result of introducing MIS; the practical definition of the most useful indicators of program effectiveness and efficiency; the specification and monitoring of data collection, compilation, and analysis requirements and procedures; procedures for generating and using processed MIS data and management information; the PHC program's capacity to absorb technological innovations; and personnel requirements. The need for improved data systems must be recognized. Data quality and systematic flow of information must be ensured from the field level upwards, and minimum information requirements need to be defined. The success of any MIS is heavily dependent on feedback of the data collected. Unless staff at all levels of a PHC program understand the importance of the data they are collecting, the value and use of the information system will be negligible. Examples of the Egyptian government's National Health Information System and the role of the World Bank are used to show how MIS and microcomputer can be introduced and used in PHC.
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  15. 15

    Training faculty in Bangladesh to use a microcomputer for public health: followup report.

    Gould JB; Frerichs RR

    PUBLIC HEALTH REPORTS. 1986 Nov-Dec; 101(6):616-23.

    In 1984 the Western Consortium for the Health Professions, Inc., under contract to the UNFPA, began a project to assist Bangladesh's National Institute for Preventive and Social Medicine (NIPSOM) in establishing a microcomputing capability. The project's goal was to enable NIPSOM to become self-sufficient in the analysis by microcomputer of health, population, and family planning data; program evaluation; and policy activities. Lack of a local microcomputer infrastructure demanded that a local team of experts be developed to run the system described in a previous report. 5 NIPSOM faculty members--3 of whom had taken the workshop held when the system was 1st installed-- were assigned to a computer committee, which was responsible for the computer's well-being. 6 months after the microcomputer system was installed, a 2nd 2-week workshop was given. The consortium's consultant facilitated the development of a basic microcomputer course, which was taught by 4 members of the computer committee to an additional 8 NIPSOM faculty members. Emphasis was placed on developing local self-reliance and the need to overcome obstacles imposed by the lack of local hardware and software support systems. A strategy is proposed for the successful introduction of microcomputers in developing countries.
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  16. 16

    The 1980 census data processing exercise and experience and the 1990 census data processing: what should be done.

    Demissie B; Muzeya IN

    [Unpublished] 1985 Nov. 28 p.

    This document is a description of the data processing operation for the 1980 Zambia population and housing census, carried out with the cooperation of the UNFPA. Collecting and checking census books, manual editing and data coding, keypunching operations, transferring information to computer tape, and processing and tabulating the results are described in Part 1. Interview schedules are described. Personal, fertility, and housing data were used, organized into books, and classified in Lusaka according to provinces and districts. Computer training was done by local supervisors and a UNFPA advisor. Editing and coding organization is described, along with difficulties. Data entry definitions and concepts and planning and production are discussed. Machine editing (i.e. checking of value ranges) was next. Programs and procedures are described. The data were finally tabulated. The categories were general population, economic, social, migration, fertility, and housing tables. A program package called COLENTS was used. Census analysis and the use of computer programs, and documenting and data archiving are discussed. Part 2 discusses improvements to be made for the 1990 census, in relation to the shortcomings of the 1980 census. The importance of data processors' early participation, and the need for realistic planning (budgeting, scheduling, organization and staffing, training needs, equipment, and space) are suggested. The questionnaire design should be considered for simplicity and code allocation. The use of microcomputers should be considered, as being deployable regionally, and for other advantages. Appendices detail the projected and actual schedule of the project, and an error study.
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  17. 17

    Learning materials for health workers.

    Dowling MA; Ritson R

    Who Chronicle. 1985; 39(5):171-5.

    The need exists to encourage developing countries to produce their own learning materials to meet the specific requirements of their own health personnel and to create a structure capable of functioning independently after any external funds and technical assistance have been phased out. In 1981, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the UN National Development Program established a joint Interregional Health Learning Materials (HLM) Program. It began with a small number of pilot projects in selected countries, the intention being to extend it gradually to other countries in the light of experience. The program is aimed at helping developing countries to produce their own teaching and learning materials adapted to their special needs and encouraging them to work together and build up a network for sharing materials and expertise. An HLM project is part of a national program and makes use of local staff and infrastructure. Both teachers and students help in preparing the learning materials. A number of national projects are now in operation, producing teaching aids, manuals, slides, guides for teachers, and textbooks for use in the field, all of which are in line with national health priorities and goals and many of which are shared with other projects. Of the countries in which HLM projects are in operation, all but 1 are in Africa. The only exception thus far is Nepal, although a project has been requested by Fiji. Technical cooperation between the African projects is beginning to make headway, despite initial problems because of differences in language. For national reliance to be achieved, the training of key staff is essential. For this purpose, WHO is collaborating with the African Medical and Research Foundation (AMREF) in Nairobi, a nongovernmental organization with many years of experience in developing teaching materials for health workers in Africa. Special emphasis is now being given to the training of national project staff in the application of microcomputers. The aim is ultimately for external support to be no longer needed. The national plan for each HLM project foresees the withdrawal of external support after 5 years. By that time the project should have a core of trained staff, the necessary equipment, and an established HLM unit within the national system and should be self-reliant in planning, testing, producing, and evaluating teaching and learning materials for its own health personnel. The production of health learning materials must clearly be part of an integrated plan for health manpower development.
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  18. 18

    Report on the evaluation of UNFPA assistance to the Sudan population and housing census of 1983: project SUD/79/P01.

    Kannisto V; McWilliam J

    New York, New York, United Nations Fund for Population Activities [UNFPA], 1985 Mar. xi, 40 p.

    Since the evaluation report of the 1973 Census of Sudan made recommendations on how to improve census implementation for the 1980 round, UNFPA felt it to be important to see if the 1983 census took them into account and if it achieved better results. The project document included 3 objectives concerning data collection and analysis: the availability of accurate and up-to-date information on the total population of Sudan, on the components of population growth, and on demographic, social and economic characteristics; and 2 objectives concerning institution building: the availability of trained statistical personnel and the strengthening of data processing facilities. 2 of the 5 objectives have been achieved--up-to-date information on the total population of Sudan and for all recognized civil sub-divisions is available and a new computer facility with adequate capacity and configuration has been installed and is in operation. The caliber of staff in the census office is high, and the training program overall was adequate. The census communication campaign emphasized the use of mass media. Overall, the publicity for the census was considered by the Mission to have been good. Although the enumeration took longer than scheduled in some areas, the observance of the enumeration timetable can be considered satisfactory. Data preparation and electronic processing have been severely delayed due to the low productivity of the computer staff. The strong points of the project were the high priority given to the census by the government; the better planning for the 1983 census as compared with the 1973 census; and the high quality of technical assistance provided by UN advisors. Weak points have been the lack of long-term resident advisors in general census organization, cartography and data analysis; the delay in the provision of government and UNFPA inputs; and the loss of trained personnel from the Department of Statistics, particularly in data processing.
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  19. 19

    Report on developments and activities related to population information during the decade since the convening of the World Population Conference, Bucharest, 1974.

    Hankinson R

    New York, United Nations, 1984 Jun. vi, 52 p. (POPIN Bulletin No. 5 ISEA/POPIN/5)

    A summary of developments in the population information field during the decade 1974-84 is presented. Progress has been made in improving population services that are available to world users. "Population Index" and direct access to computerized on-line services and POPLINE printouts are available in the US and 13 other countries through a cooperating network of institutions. POPLINE services are also available free of charge to requestors from developing countries. Regional Bibliographic efforts are DOCPAL for Latin America. PIDSA for Africa, ADOPT and EBIS/PROFILE. Much of the funding and support for population information activities comes from 4 major sources: 1) UN Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA): 2) US Agency for International Development (USAID); 3) International Development Research Centre (IRDC): and 4) the Government of Australia. There are important philosophical distinctions in the support provided by these sources. Duplication of effort is to be avoided. Many agencies need to develop an institutional memory. They are creating computerized data bases on funded projects. The creation of these data bases is a major priority for regional population information services that serve developing countries. Costs of developing these information services are prohibitive; however, it is important to see them in their proper perspective. Many governments are reluctant to commit funds for these activites. Common standards should be adopted for population information. Knowledge and use of available services should be increased. The importance os back-up services is apparent. Hard-copy reproductions of items in data bases should be included. This report is primarily descriptive rather than evaluative. However, given the increase in population distribution and changes in government attitudes over the importance of population matters, the main tasks for the next decade should be to build on these foundations; to insure effective and efficient use of services; to share experience and knowledge through POPIN and other networks; and to demonstrate to governments the valuable role of information programs in developing national population programs.
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  20. 20

    ESCAP/POPIN Expert Working Group on Development of Population Information Centres and Networks, 20-23 June 1984, Bangkok, Thailand.

    United Nations. Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific [ESCAP]. Population Division

    Population Headliners. 1984 Jul; (112 Suppl):1-6.

    An overview of current population information programs at the regional, national, and global level was presented at a meeting of the Expert Working Group on Development of Population Information Centres and Networks. On the global level, the decentralized Population Information Network (POPIN) was established, consisting of population libraries, clearinghouses, information systems, and documentation centers. The Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) Regional Population Information Centre (PIC) has actively promoted the standardization of methodologies for the collection and processing of data, the use of compatible terminology, adoption of classification systems, computer-assisted data and information handling, and improved programs of publication and infomration dissemination, within and among national centers. Among the national PICs, 83% are attached to the primary national family planning/fertility control unit and 17% are attached to demographic data, research, and analysis units. Lack of access to specialized information handling equipment such as microcomputers, word processors, and computer terminals remains a problem for PICs. Recommendations were made by the Expert Working Group to improve the functions of PICs: 1) the mandate and resoponsibilities of the PIC should be explicilty stated; 2) PICs should collect, process, and disseminate population information in the most effective format to workers in the population feild; 3) PICs should be given flexibility in the performance of activitites by their governing bodies; 4) short-term training should be provided in computerization and dissemination of information; 5) research and evaluation mechanisms for PIC activities should be developed; 6) PIC staff should prepare policy briefs for decision makers; 7) access to parent organizations should be given to nongovernment PICs; 8) study tours to foreign PICs should be organized for PIC staff; and 9) on-the-job training in indexing and abstracting should be provided. Networking among PICs can be further facilitated by written acquisition policies, automation of bibliographic information, common classification systems, and exchange of ideas and experience between various systems.
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  21. 21

    In-service training on population/family planning information system, 19 May-9 July 1981, Bangkok.

    Thailand. Ministry of Public Health. National Family Planning Program. Thai Population Clearing-House / Documentation Centre

    Bangkok, Thailand, Ministry of Public Health. National Family Planning Programme, Thai Population Clearing House/Documentation Centre, [1981]. 321 p. (ASEAN Australian Project No. 3 Developing/Strengthening National Population Information Systems and Networks in ASEAN Countries: Thailand)

    This report provides several modules for developing information management skills in population information. After describing the main functions of the ESCAP Population Division Clearing House and Information Section, and the Population Education Clearing House of Unesco, the report breaks down the training program into the following sections: technical processes (acquisitions, cataloging and classification, and preservation); literature searching; abstracting; collection development; collection maintenance; networking; library automation; and information storage and retrieval. Each module is accompanied by training exercises; the section on technical processes contains a glossary.
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  22. 22


    Asian and Pacific Population Programme News. 1981; Spec No:24-5.

    China's 3rd national census will belong to the era of modern census taking. Over 6 million enumerators will be involved along with 29 computers for data processing. The 3-year budget exceeds the equivalent of $135 million. A pilot census was taken in the city and country of Wuxi in Jiangsu province south of Shanghai during June 1980. Additional pilot censuses are to be conducted in the provinces beginning early in 1981. The full count is scheduled to be 1 year later on July 1, 1982. Results will be processed and made available by 1984 so that planners can utilize them in drafting the 5-year development plan for 1985-1990. The censuses of 1953 and 1964 yeilded little data by modern standards. The longterm objective of the Population Census Office is to build up a modern census taking capability. This will provide data for the formulation of population and development policies, programs to implement those policies, and family planning activities. Another longterm objective is to extend the new data processing system to 399 prefectures and 2168 counties in China. The equipment will be subsequently used in related research activities. For the current census, a complete organization of census offices, census working teams, and census working groups will be established at successive administrative levels down to neighborhood (urban) and brigade (rural) levels, beginning early in 1981. The full census will cover 29 provinces of China. Approximately 6 million enumerators will each cover about 30-40 households. 2 models of computer and corresponding data entry systems are being used: 8 Wang VS 2200 systems and 21 IBM 4300 series systems from the U.S. The United Nations Fund for Population Activities is supplying equipment and technical assistance for the entire census amounting to more than $15 million. The Population Census Office will analyze and publish the census data.
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  23. 23

    The NAPRALERT data base an an information source for application to traditional medicine.

    Farnsworth NR

    In: Bannerman RH, Burton J, Ch'en Wen-Chieh. Traditional medicine and health care coverage: a reader for health administrators and practitioners. Geneva, Switzerland, World Health Organization, 1983. 184-93.

    It has been estimated that from 25 to 75 thousand species of higher (flowering) plants exist on earth. Of these only about 1% are acknowledged through scientific studies to have real therapeutic value when used in extract form by humans. A computerized data base on the chemistry and pharmacology of natural products is available. The data base is maintained in the Department of Pharmacognosy and Pharmacology, College of Pharmacy, University of Illinois, at the Medical Center, and has been given the acronym NAPRALERT (Natural Products ALERT). A systematic surveillance of the world literature on the chemistry and pharmacology of natural products has been in progress since 1975. In addition, a substantial amount of retrospective information has been acquired and computerized on selected genera of plants and on the pharmacological activities of natural products. These retrospective searches extend back into the mid 1700s. The major fields covered in the NAPRALERT system are 1) the organism record; 2) work types; 3) compound record; 4) pharmacology record; and 5) demographic record. There are 2 major areas in which traditional medicine can be served through the use of NAPRALERT: data retrieval and problem solving. Since most problems in traditional medicine are regional ones, it is possible to program the NAPRALERT data base to respond primarily to questions concerning plants of a specific country, or within a given continent. Recently the NAPRALERT base has been made available to individuals, industrial firms, academic institutions and government agencies with a modest fee calculated on the basis of actual computer time required to generate data output, the cost of copying the material and the mailing costs. In the near future, NAPRALERT will be approaching international funding agencies to enlist their cooperation in financing a 10 year program that will allow them to computerize all of the world literature on natural products as far back as 1900. This will be an enormous effort, which cannot be effectively accomplished without direct cooperation from interested scientists and institutions in developing countries. A plan for obtaining that objective is outlined.
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