Synergy begins Webinar series on the DAD


Synergy is beginning a series of Webinars on the Development Assistance Database (DAD) for UNDP staff, government officials, and NGOs through WebEx software.

There are two upcoming Webinars for those in government and the development community in the continent of Africa. They will be held at 9 AM, EST on Wednesday, September 20th, and 9:30 AM on Thursday, September 21st. The agenda includes a live demonstration of the DAD, as well as a discussion of best practices and lessons learned from implementations of the system in 19 developing countries.

Katrina Recovery: Lessons from the Developing World

By Ashot Hovanesian, President and CEO, Synergy International Systems

As we approach the first anniversary of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita it’s natural to ask “Are we continuing to make the best progress possible in the recovery effort, and are we better prepared today to respond to and recover from these, and other, types of disasters than we were nearly a year ago?”

Read Full Article here

Sri Lanka Deploys Housing Tracking Module in Synergy Development Assistance Database and Portal


Synergy International Systems, Inc. (Synergy), the Intelligent Data Manager(TM) company for mission-critical data collection, analysis and dissemination, today announced that the government of Sri Lanka’s Reconstruction and Development Agency (RADA) has launched a new Housing Program module within its deployment of Synergy’s Development Assistance Database (DAD) and Synergy Portal. The module extends the breadth and value of the role DAD-Sri Lanka is playing in increasing visibility and accountability into how Asian Tsunami Relief funds are spent and how projects are progressing.

Read Full Synergy Press Release here

Final DAD Pakistan Launched


The Development Assistance Database for Pakistan was launched on Saturday, seven months after the earthquake that devastated the Kashmir region of the country. The DAD was developed, tested, and installed over a period of four months.

The DAD Pakistan is Synergy’s newest model with a new design and the most state-of-the-art capabilities now available to Synergy’s customers. The DAD Pakistan supports English and Urdu, and is fully integrated with Pakistan’s Loan and Grant Tracking System. This and other user friendly attributes make the DAD accessible to the public and enhance transparency and accountability to the local and international public. The DAD system also facilitates Monitoring and Evaluation by tracking Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) in line with the Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness.

The DAD is tracking nearly $9 billion worth of commitments from bilateral, multilateral and other donors.

Synergy and Horn Group Team Up for World-Class Marketing and Public Relations, Islamabad, Pakistan


Synergy International Systems and Horn Group, Inc. have formed a marketing partnership to elevate and underscore Synergy’s global success story in delivering mission-critical solutions using the Intelligent Data ManagerTH web services and business intelligence platform.

With demand growing for Synergy’s IDM-powered products such as the Development Assistance Database (DAD), Synergy Portal and Synergy Analytica, Synergy is making the commitment to executing an effective marketing communications and public relations campaign to the general and business media, technology press and industry analyst community. Synergy selected the Horn Group after an extensive search process for a PR firm that had the best mix of enterprise and web software technology experience coupled with innovative marketing and messaging capabilities.

Horn Group is an independent, full-service technology communications firm, with the mission to set the industry standard with best practices in client service and employment. The firm works with companies at all stages of growth in the supply chain, ecommerce, infrastructure, security and storage and technology services market segments. The company serves clients from its San Francisco, CA headquarters, Boston, MA, New York, NY and Washington, DC offices. Horn Group was recently voted the Best Mid-Sized Agency in 2005 in the PRSourceCode High Tech Survey. More information on Horn Group is available at http://www.horngroup.com

Synergy deploys DAD system for Rwanda


Today, Synergy International Systems launched the new DAD Rwanda in conjunction with UNDP Rwanda and the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning at the Second Annual Development Partners Retreat (DPR) held in Gisenyi. The retreat gathered government representatives, multilateral and bilateral donors, international and national NGOs, and members of the private sector. The Minister of Finance and Economic Planning and the Resident Coordinator for the UN were in attendance.

Rwanda’s development strategy includes a clustered approach to sectoral aid coordination. This means that health, education, and private sector partners are working together to achieve government objectives through aid. This process is reducing reporting, monitoring and evaluation constraints on all parties by streamlining and standardizing these procedures. The DAD will be an integral part of this process.

The new DAD will aid in the development coordination process that Rwanda has undertaken to produce more reliable and consistent aid flows. The DAD will help coordinate the large development assistance community that is already present in Rwanda.

Synergy Joins UNDP and Iraqi Government Ministries for Orientation and Needs Assessment Workshop


The United Nations Development Programme hosted a week long Development Assistance Database (DAD) Orientation and Needs Assessment Workshop in Amman, Jordan for the key government ministries of Iraq to collaborate with Synergy professionals and discuss the role of the DAD in Iraq’s development strategy. The Amman workshop provided a forum for key stakeholders to review goals, achievements, processes, procedures, and best practices established during the first phase of the DAD’s implementation.

The DAD Iraq is currently tracking live data on over US$8.5 billion worth of development assistance. Synergy originally developed and launched the system in June 2004, in conjunction with the Coalition Provisional Authority, to track and manage financial contributions for development projects throughout Iraq. The DAD was subsequently transferred to the Iraqi Ministry of Planning and Development Cooperation (MoPDC) in March, 2005 as a key tool in their role as the central aid coordination and management organization for the national government.

After the initial launch of the DAD, Iraqi officials observed the efficacy of an integrated aid coordination platform. The latest Amman workshop was designed to build upon this success by promoting a forward thinking analysis of the DAD with discussions regarding new and potential data management capabilities beyond the central DAD. Several government line ministries are now pursuing a comprehensive solutions package to complement MoPDC’s DAD which will enhance and extend the transparency and accountability of government financial functions and program performance.

The ministries interested in the next generation DAD deployment who participated in the Amman workshop included the Ministries of Education (MoEd), Electricity (MoEl), Health (MoH), and Municipalities and Public Works (MoMPW). Also participating was the Ministry of Planning and Development Cooperation and UNDP Iraq country team members.

Pakistan Earthquake Relief & Reconstruction


In response to the October 8, 2005 earthquake in the Kashmir region of Pakistan, Synergy was contracted by UNDP to produce a Core Development Assistance Database (DAD) for the Economic Affairs Division (EAD) of the Ministry of Finance in Pakistan to facilitate aid management, coordination, transparency and accountability in the wake of the donor response to the Pakistan earthquake.

After successful implementations of the DAD in four of the Tsunami affected countries, Synergy was called upon again to rapidly produce and deploy the software needed to track billions of dollars in funding. An initial needs assessment mission was conducted in November, 2005. A contract with UNDP was signed on January 30, 2006. Since this time, a pilot DAD was launched and on-site taining has begun.

DAD Vietnam Released


The Development Assistance Database (DAD) Vietnam was launched by Synergy International Systems through the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Vietnam.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs reported that the MPI Deputy Minister Cao Viet Sinh spoke on the need for the DAD Vietnam by stating, “it is significant not only to government agencies or donors involved, but also to aid beneficiaries.”  UNDP Resident Representative Subinay Nandy stated that the DAD was part of the overall ODA management effort to realize the commitments set forth in the Paris Declaration and the Hanoi Core Statement on Aid Effectiveness.

The DAD Vietnam will allow the government of Vietnam to track up-to-the-minute information on ODA commitments, disbursements, and project status.  The DAD will support ODA reporting, monitoring and evaluation, harmonization, and will enhance government and development partner accountability and transparency.

Historical data from the past decade of ODA has been released by UNDP to be included in the DAD.  This will facilitate monitoring and evaluation and aid tracking as Rwanda’s development partners look toward the future.

Donor Assistance Database rebranded to Development Assistance Database


Synergy International Systems is announcing that, effective immediately, the Synergy DAD brand will now be referred to as the “Development Assistance Database”, which emphasizes the broader and more comprehensive scope of DAD 5.0 in supporting development overall, rather than focusing on donors to the development and reconstruction process. The DAD has become the leading Aid Coordination and Management system of choice and the new standard for use by governments, international organizations and key stakeholders involved in the next generation of development programs around the world that emphasize performance, accountability and transparency. This rebranding to the Development Assistance Database is the result of strategic new business initiatives and DAD deployments that Synergy expects to be announcing over the near term.

Synergy deploys DAD systems in support of countries affected by Tsunami disaster


Synergy International Systems announced today that its DAD 5.0 aid coordination and management system has been implemented in several countries affected by last year’s Tsunami disaster in the Indian Ocean region. As part of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) support of government-led recovery efforts, The Maldives, Sri Lanka and Thailand now have DAD systems coming online which are collecting and tracking aid and assistance data in support of their respective reconstruction projects.Preparations are also underway to establish additional DAD systems in other affected countries in the region.Training on use of the DAD has begun involving the major stakeholders, donors and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) that are actively working on the ground in this massive relief and rehabilitation effort.

Ensuring a timely and effective reconstruction process which meets people’s expectations is a key priority facing Tsunami-affected countries. At the High Level Coordination Meeting on Rehabilitation and Reconstruction of Tsunami-Affected Countries hosted by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) on 18 March 2005, UNDP and ADB were asked to support governments in tracking Tsunami funds and whether projects are achieving their goals.

According to the UNDP, “Nationally-owned tracking systems will better enable the Governments and their partners to align support with the needs – avoiding duplication, and filling gaps – by building up a very detailed picture of who is doing what and where. The DAD will track every major project – covering both the finances (how much was promised and how much has been delivered project-by-project) and the expected results. Expected outputs are set for each project and a deadline for delivery. Actual results achieved will be measured quantitatively and qualitatively. This makes it easy for Government and donor countries to check whether funds are being used in the way they expected. Members of the public can use the internet to see which projects are planned in their district, and whether these projects are delivering results.”

After the Manila meeting, the Governments of Sri Lanka, Maldives and Thailand asked for assistance from UNDP in establishing their own nationally owned tracking systems. Synergy International Systems, working with UNDP country teams, conducted a round of rigorous needs assessments in order to customize the Donor Assistance Database to meet each country’s specific requirements. The DAD systems have now been installed within the Government body responsible for Tsunami coordination.

In addition to standard DAD functions such as bi-lingual Web Portals, GIS and advanced data analysis tools, new capabilities for tracking reconstruction in impacted sectors such as housing, fishing and agriculture have been added, as well as NGO registration databases for coordinating activities among the myriad local implementation agencies.Each DAD system will track funding assistance and the correlated reconstruction projects at a detailed reporting level, such as state, district and sub-district.

“These aid tracking systems will help all partners plan their assistance better, and provide ordinary citizens with a tool to hold their governments and partners accountable – both in the Tsunami affected countries, and back home. The goal is full transparency and enhanced effectiveness” says the UNDP.

UNDP is also developing a regional database which will be on-line by August, 2005. The Regional Tsunami DAD, based in Bangkok, will bring together information across all Tsunami-affected countries, and cover funds, projects and results through one website.