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open-ihm: Open Source Software
 

open-ihm: Open Source Software

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Evidence for Development is a UK based charity that has developed methods for data collection that have produced a far more accurate picture of rural economies than was previously possible. These ...

Evidence for Development is a UK based charity that has developed methods for data collection that have produced a far more accurate picture of rural economies than was previously possible. These methods can be applied during an economic crisis to determine which households are in need of aid and what effect any aid intervention would have on the economy of the recipients. This enables governments and aid agencies to tailor interventions to local needs.

open-ihm is an open source software project that aims to bring the data collection methods developed by Evidence for Development to a wider number of practitioners. The project is being led by Chancellor College, University of Malawi, in participation with Evidence for Development and the University of Wolverhampton.

You can find out more on the Evidence for Development website: http://www.evidencefordevelopment.com/

and join the Facebook group here:
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Evidence-for-Development/103931058709

If you wish to use open-ihm software, or contribute to its development, please see the open-ihm homepage here: http://code.google.com/p/open-ihm/

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    open-ihm: Open Source Software open-ihm: Open Source Software Presentation Transcript

    • open-ihm Information to Improve Lives - local economic models improving aid decision making Evidence for Development Chancellor College, Malawi University of Wolverhampton, UK
    • Evidence for Development
        • Over $108 billion is invested every year to help 
        • Much of that money comes directly from "ordinary" people donating their income
        • ...and they make those donations to improve the lives of the poorest people in the world
        • So, how do   you know that the money you give is spent wisely?
        • And how do the aid agencies decide how to plan their spending?
    • Evidence for Development
        • Evidence for Development is a UK based charity set up by Celia Petty and John Seaman to investigate these questions. The founders have developed simple data collection methods and models that give a far more accurate picture of rural economies than previously possible. At a national scale, these have been successfully used to predict (and prevent) major food crises. At a local scale they’ve been used to plan and evaluate projects to reduce poverty and exclusion.
        • EfD wants to make these methods widely used and openly available to everyone, so it works with universities and other local agencies to pass on leadership and research skills to national/developing country level.
    • Graduate (Agricultural Economics) collecting household income data in Malawi field assessment
    • Success stories
        • Recently there was a major crop failure in Malawi, but we didn't read about it in the papers or see it on TV because there was no famine, no starving babies looking heart wrenching on the news.
        • Because the government of Malawi were able to use methods promoted by EfD to predict the effect of crop failures and loss of markets
        • Because the government knew what was coming and acted quickly and cheaply to avert the disaster. 
        • A social welfare project was piloted in Malawi, which aimed to give cash welfare transfers to the poorest households. A study by EfD and Chancellor College discovered that the targeting method used was failing to reach the people it was meant to help. This led all the agencies involved to re-think the approach and develop a better method of reaching out to the poorest and reducing social exclusion.
    • open-ihm
        • open-ihm is an Open Source (Free as in Speech) software project which aims to bring the IHM technique to every area of the world it can help
        • The project will produce a suite of free (beer and speech) software that enables economists to record and analyse household income data
        • Software development is led by Tiwonge Manda and Brown Msiska at Chancellor College, University of Malawi, with support from the Patrick Kambewa in the Economics department at Chancellor and Evidence for Development 
        • Chancellor is expected to become a hub for Open Source software projects in the region
    • Image from Wikipedia Zomba is here (abouts)
    • Chancellor College, Zomba, Malawi (Image from Wikipedia)
    • Visiting Chancellor College
    • http://code.google.com/p/open-ihm/
    • Tiwonge Manda and Brown Msiska: BDFLs of open-ihm
    • Get involved
        • Find out more: 
          • http://www.evidencefordevelopment.com/
        • Tell all your friends: 
          • http://www.facebook.com/pages/Evidence-for-Development/103931058709
        • Donate: 
          • http://www.justgiving.com/evidencefordevelopment
        • Contribute code / db skills / artwork:
          • http://code.google.com/p/open-ihm/
    • Extra (deprecated) slides  
    • Imagine we had a sudden, world-wide recession and all the banks collapsed, but the Euro was still viable currency.  How much is your potential income this week?
    • Possible answers...
        • Your salary (if you still have one).
        • Plus ... the sale of all your unnecessary assets.
        • Plus ... any income you could generate by hiring out your own labour.
        • Plus ... any rental you could gain.
        • Plus ... anything else you can think of.
      • Just to make things simpler:
        • You just sold your possessions, making them more widely available and therefore cheaper.
        • You just rented a room, making rooms more widely available, and therefore cheaper.
        • You just hired out your labour, making it more widely available, and therefore cheaper.
    • Conclusion: economics is complicated
        • This is a major problem for development where life and death decisions are made on the basis of whether or not the potential income of a group of people will keep them alive.
        • Despite the difficulties, data needs to be gathered quickly and cheaply by local experts if it is of any use
        •