Weekly Update: 22 April

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Another short week but this time due to an official holiday.

I met with the RBA focal point for the Millennium Villages (MVs) which UNDP has been supporting, in partnership with the Earth Institute ,for the last 5 years or so. RBA contact me due to our involvement in the e-health working group of the Broadband Commission. It seems that RBA has decided to end UNDP’s operational involvement in the MVs and instead will focus on related upstream policy and knowledge products.

The Earth Institute, under the direction of Jeffrey Sachs, will thus be doing implementation on its own -or with other partners. RBA is currently speaking with PG and starting to craft a concept note for the planned policy work.  I suggested to RBA that we, ICTD/e-gov, should be involved, not only due to the fact thatmany MVs do use ICTs but also because we have been in contact with the Earth Institute in the past. I drafted a concept note (see here) which I shared with RBA.

Last week a had lunch with a tech researcher/consultant and discussed the role of ICTs and e-gov in development. This has now become a blog entry in Institute for Technology and Change blog (see here). Unfortunately, I was not given a chance to provide inputs to the content before it was posted so I not sure I did say some of the things that we can read there. They also decided to use the UNDP logo without permission. I have asked them to remove it.

At the weekly UNGIS call, a hint that UNDP will indeed be leading the process for the next year was made by some of the partner agencies. I had to quickly deny this. I then sent a note to ExO requesting that the official response to UNESCO, the current UNGIS chair, goes out as soon as feasible. I have however privately notified UNESCO about this so they can move the process ahead without UNDP being at the head.

The biweekly staff meeting took place without any major shake ups, as expected. The one topic on the agenda was the Agenda for Change that the Administrator shared last week. DGG is now supposed to be pro-active instead of reactive but I am not sure how this will be accomplish without a more formal structure within the team.

Cheers, Raúl

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