September 2005

Review of Millennium Goals in i4d

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Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) became the running theme of i4d in 2005.  Since its second volume, we have been preparing the stories and organising them thematically. The Millennium Declaration made in 2000 aims to reduce poverty by half by 2015. The progress made in achieving these lofty goals made at the United Nations, and ratified by 170 countries, are being reviewed five years after the declaration. The editorial team planned a calendar for the 2005 to focus on MDGs, with a specific thrust on how ICTs are helping in accelerating the processes.

Reviewing the impact of ICTs in various development sectors had already provided an editorial perspective. ICTs  are important empowering tools and have been used by many projects and communities for reducing poverty and bettering the lives. The challenge of finding numerical and quantifiable indicators for measuring the achievement of the development objectives in various sectors continues even as we are coming to the ninth issue of this volume.

As a member of the Global Knowledge Partnership (www.globalknowledge.org) we were beginning to understand the importance of multi-stakeholder partnerships. Our alliance with International Institute for Communications and Development (IICD) gave us a link up to stories to be told and shared from African partners. An institutional arrangement, already established in 2004 with Hivos, led us to think about issues like human rights and HIV/AIDS as critical to ensure that development goals are enshrined within the human rights discourse and in consideration of the pandemic like HIV/AIDS and other diseases like tuberculosis and malaria. i4d has evolved into a robust global development magazine. Thanks to our many partners and over 125 authors who form the i4d community we reach new audiences in 119 countries.

The decision of making MDGs the running theme meant a lot of background reading, both drawn from books and research papers, and country reports drawn in from the lead agencies in UN responsible for each of the MDG theme. Our in-house research led us to a valuable insight into the process of building national plans, the role of NGOs and civil society in the Millennium Campaign and in addressing the different targets of the MDGs.

The key objective is to generate greater public awareness on MDGs and National Development Goals and review the targets and indicators by showcasing stories that have worked around the globe.

We also learnt about individuals who had been leading some of these campaigns. Talking to them during international conferences where the i4d team members participated, as well as during specific interviews that we planned, our source of learning expanded from Internet and print to personal dialogues and networking.Sources of information and background research for i4d editorial team are as follows

  • Resources available on the Internet- specially from specific UN sites
  • Relevant documents and papers in magazines and journals
  • Online papers and research articles produced by OECD-DAC, DFID, UNDP, and national government reports to UN
  • Personal interactions with experts
  • Interviews with leaders of agencies, institutions and international NGOs
  • Networking and informal communi-cations

Despite the challenges, the MDG issues have been one of the most rewarding experiences for the entire i4d team. All issues of i4d are accessible online www.i4d.csdms.in  in pdf format and also searchable by author, date, etc. Also, since the past few months, the magazine is being released under Creative Commons licence, thus allowing for more open knowledge sharing. These are a valuable resource for research, advocacy and learning.

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