The E-Connection

Published: Sunday 15 September 2002

-- In an attempt to bridge the digital divide, Bhutan's planning commission secretariat is establishing an information network in all its 20 administrative districts (dzongkhags). The project -- named Planning Information Network (PIN) -- seeks to enhance connectivity by linking up the dzongkhags with the secretariat's Intranet system.

Under the programme, officials are being imparted training in desktop publishing, data collection, database formation, Internet applications and other related software. The basics have already been taught in eight dzongkhags till now. The United Nations Development Programme's (UNDP) Japan Policy and Human Resources Development Fund package has funded the package.

Secretariat deputy director Karma Wezer, who is coordinating the project, says, "The districts can feed data and information directly from their computers to the PIN on the Intranet. These inputs will then be further processed and analysed for use by decision-makers."

Wezer hopes that the new communication channel will enable dzongkhag administrations to improve their planning and decision-making process thereby helping to provide better public services to local communities.

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