ESCAP News In Brief: April 18, 2014

Satellite earth station antenna in the UN Headquarters compound.

Photo Credit: UN Photo

Latest news updates from ESCAP.

Experts adopt UN action plan to improve disaster information management

An action plan to reduce disaster risks and build resilience in South and South-West Asia by managing information more efficiently, was adopted at a UN meeting in New Delhi this week. The plan will enhance the capacity of governments in the sub region to be better prepared and more resilient through improved information infrastructure. Disaster risk in South and South-West Asia is not only disproportionately high but is also compounded by the seismic and hydro-meteorological hazards such as earthquakes, floods and cyclones, drought and tsunami that can strike many countries at a time. A comprehensive framework for disaster risk management with well-organized databases, information systems and national spatial data infrastructure will help to harness the region’s vast reservoir of information and knowledge. The action plan was adopted at an Expert Group Meeting jointly organized by the ICT and Disaster Risk Reduction Division of UNESCAP and the ESCAP South and South-West Asia Office. The plan will guide the work of the Asian and Pacific Centre for the Development of Disaster Information Management.

UN workshop supports ICT for development policy in Asia-Pacific and Africa

A UN workshop to help government officials and policymakers in the Asia-Pacific and African regions better formulate Information Communication Technology Development (ICTD) policy in their respective countries was held in Incheon from 15-18 April. The workshop entitled ‘Capacity Building Workshop on E-Government, Information Security and Privacy’ focused on how ICT can be applied in government transactions and operations as well as how to address information security and privacy issues. During the four-day workshop, participants were presented with information and frameworks for formulating policy to address information security and privacy concerns in a rapidly-changing environment. On the final day of the event, a roundtable was held to discuss how participants could strengthen ICTD human capacity building in their respective countries and to promote collaboration for sustaining ICTD initiatives. The workshop was organized ESCAP's Asia-Pacific Training Centre for Information and Communication Technology for Development (UN-APCICT), in collaboration with the Telecommunications Technology Association of the Republic of Korea and the African Development Bank in Incheon.

UN promotes ICT for development education for youth in Asia-Pacific

Academics from higher education institutions in 11 Asia-Pacific countries attended a UN workshop in Incheon from 15-18 April, on planning, implementing and evaluating Information Communication Technology Development (ICTD) projects. Highlights included a video-conference session to introduce ‘Engaged Learning’ as a way of linking classroom learning to reality in community development. The session helped participants gain a better understanding of the engaged learning approach and explore possibilities for applying it in their educational programmes. The regional training of trainers workshop entitled ‘Project Management and Information and Communication Technology for Development (ICTD) and Monitoring & Evaluation (M&E) of the Primer Programme’ was held by ESCAP's Asia-Pacific Training Centre for Information and Communication Technology for Development (UN-APCICT) as part of the Primer Series on ICTD for Youth.