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Development Gateway Foundation.

Founded in 2001, the Washington, D.C.-based Development Gateway Foundation (DGF) takes advantage of new information and communications technologies (ICT) to help nations alleviate poverty and foster sustainable development. The DGF's activities encompass four main program areas: development and support of research and training centers in developing countries; annual ICT Development Forums, where global leaders meet to discuss practical ways to use ICT effectively; grants and investments; and the Development Gateway itself, an interactive resource located at http://www.developmentgateway.org/.

The DGF is a unique nonprofit partnership of more than 120 public and private entities from varied sectors who fund the Development Gateway and other foundation resources. Environmental and health agency members include Family Health International, the Program for Appropriate Technology in Health, the United Nations Environment Programme, and the World Health Organization. International funding agency members include the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, and the World Bank Group. Private-sector members include IBM and Microsoft Corporation. The Contributors page contains a complete listing of participants and links to their homepages.

From its beginning, the Development Gateway has been configured to facilitate interactive information exchange (in English, Spanish, and French) among the donor community, researchers, ICT engineers and developers, advocacy groups, and national and international policy-making agencies. Four main pathways--Exchange Ideas & Knowledge, Find Development Projects, Explore Business Opportunities, and Access Country Gateways--guide users to the area of the website they wish to visit. Users can access online forums; look up resources on business opportunities, development projects, publications, and statistics for each of the approximately 200 nations in existence; scan an online global procurement market; and add their own content.

The Exchange Ideas & Knowledge section comprises public forums on each of 34 topics including environmental law, indigenous knowledge, urban development, and water resources management. Each topic page features an introduction, news, a calendar of related events, a programs and projects listing, a bulletin board including postings of job and grant announcements, and procurement notices. Each page also provides pertinent resources such as data and statistics, documents and reports, and organizations, networks, and people. Topic pages are supervised by members of contributing organizations who sign up to serve in this capacity, and by advisors who provide expert advice on particular subjects. These resource supervisors help manage the flow of content that is provided by their groups and other registered members.

The core of the Find Development Projects section is Accessible Information on Development Activities, or AiDA. This fully searchable information exchange of more than 400,000 records contains constantly updated historical and ongoing reports on the development activities of more than 200 major international development donors and other nongovernmental organizations. As the largest public information source of its kind, AiDA helps organizations quickly and easily obtain the information necessary to maintain optimal cooperation and coordination with other groups, and aids in the standardization of web development among development-related organizations.

Clicking the Explore Business Opportunities option takes the visitor to dgMarket. This page, provided in 11 languages including Dutch, Indonesian, Romanian, and Turkish, is where governments and other donors can directly post contract and procurement notices for development projects. Items are classified under 17 topics including agriculture and food, mining, urban development, environment, and health and population. The Access Country Gateways option is based around the 44 locally owned and managed public-private partnerships that work within individual developing countries, making up the Development Gateway. The introductory page for this section provides resources and news on country gateway efforts, while each country's gateway page describes that group's background and highlights of its work, as well as contact information and links to the partnership's website.
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Title Annotation:EHPnet
Author:Dooley, Erin E.
Publication:Environmental Health Perspectives
Date:Jul 1, 2003
Words:608
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