The Development Assistance Database (DAD) Community of Practice (CoP) is happy to announce the completion of the 2011 Global Conference & Training, which took place from 20-24 June in Synergy International Systems’ Global Learning Center in Yerevan, Armenia. This year’s event brought together about 40 practitioners from 16 countries, including Armenia, Cameroon, Iraq, Kenya, Lesotho, Mauritania, Moldova, Mozambique, Sierra Leone, the Solomon Islands, Somalia and Somaliland, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Tajikistan, and the United States.
The week-long conference consisted of a three-day workshop and a two-day training program. The workshop gave the participants an opportunity to present their country experiences in establishing the DAD or other Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) information systems. In particular, the participants discussed and brainstormed common challenges related to timely and reliable data reporting, challenges to and opportunities for linking M&E systems to decision-making processes, and the sustainability of government management information systems.
The two-day training program, which included ten sessions, was led by senior Synergy staff and covered a wide range of topics such as M&E Data Collection and Quality Assessment, M&E Analytics and Reporting, and the DAD Implementation Process.
The conference also offered an exciting cultural program. The roundtables of the third day of the workshop were held in a scenic location overlooking the 1st century A.D. temple of Garni. The participants also visited a number of historic sites, including the ancient Cathedral of Etchmiadzin and the architectural splendor of the Geghard monastery. The participants also enjoyed the lively and moving sounds of the “Little Singers of Armenia,” a world-famous children’s ensemble that performs traditional Armenian music.
The evaluation survey completed after the conference clearly showed that the event was highly successful in meeting the participants’ expectations. And the participants were unanimously excited about being part of a vibrant community of professionals who can benefit from one another’s experience and knowledge. As Mr. Christopher Oisebe, Chief Economist of Kenya’s Ministry of Finance and the Manager of the Electronic Projects Monitoring Information System (ePro-MIS), put it, “DAD is now a family of practitioners. Let us all continue to strengthen our ties in order to advance our knowledge and skills and to improve our development efforts.”