DevInfo is a powerful database system that is used to compile and disseminate data on human development. The software package has evolved from a decade of innovations in database systems that support informed decision making and promote the use of data to advocate for human development. The DevInfo project is an interagency initiative managed by UNICEF on behalf of the United Nations (UN) System.
DevInfo was developed by UNICEF in cooperation with the UN System to assist the UN and Member States in tracking progress toward the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). In 2002, DevInfo was proposed as a standard software package for the whole UN System. Its specific purpose is to store existing data, identify gaps in the MDG indicators, provide a single entry point for data on the MDG indicators, and disseminate information simply and attractively.
DevInfo is an integrated desktop and web-enabled tool that supports both standard and user-defined indicators. The standard set of MDG indicators is at the core of the DevInfo package. In addition, at the regional and country levels, database administrators have the option to add local indicators to their databases. The software supports an unlimited number of levels of geographical coverage: from global level to regional, sub-regional, national and sub-national down to sub-district and village levels (including schools, health centers, water points).
DevInfo has simple and user-friendly features that can be used to query the database and generate tables, graphs, and maps. The system provides an ideal tool for evidence-based planning, results-focused monitoring, and advocacy purposes. It allows for organizing, storing and displaying data in a uniform way to facilitate data sharing at the country level across government departments, UN agencies, and development partners.
Data from DevInfo can be exported to XLS, HTML, PDF, CSV and XML files and imported from spreadsheets in a standardized format. DevInfo also has a data exchange module for importing data from industry-standard statistics software packages such as SPSS, SAS, Stata, Redatam, and CSPro.
In the latest version of DevInfo, DI 6.0, users will find significant improvements in the ways they can generate data views and produce presentation objects, as well as many new, powerful features to make user experience much more enjoyable.
Reduced learning curve: The enhanced user interface of DevInfo 6.0 contains a new Data Wizard, enabling first-time users to easily access data and generate presentation objects with minimal training.
Improved performance: DevInfo 6.0 executes tasks significantly faster as compared to previous versions of DevInfo, particularly on large data sets.
Instant previews for tables, graphs and maps: DevInfo 6.0 provides instant previews of tables, graphs and maps when generating data views.
Upgraded gallery: The completely upgraded DevInfo 6.0 gallery allows users to edit previously created tables, graphs and maps without having to re-create them. It also displays thumbnails of saved presentation objects and allows users to search for presentation objects by keywords.
New report features: DevInfo 6.0 enables users to generate profiles as well as standard and advanced reports. Users can create their own report layouts, which can then be used to generate quick and consistent reports for different areas or time periods. Users can also create reports with dynamically-embedded presentation objects, which can easily be updated to reflect changes in the underlying data.
New book and video presentation tools: DevInfo 6.0 now introduces new ways to make exciting animated presentations in flipbook (di Book) and video (di Video) formats.
New desktop sidebar: DevInfo 6.0 contains a customizable desktop sidebar which provides users with quick access to gallery objects, RSS feeds, and related facts.
Live software updates: Software updates to DevInfo 6.0 are now available through a live update feature, enabling users to stay updated with the latest application version.
DevInfo lite: Users now have the option of running DevInfo 6.0 directly from the setup CD instead of having to install it on their computer, thereby saving space on hard drive.
DevInfo is distributed royalty-free to all Member States and UN agencies for deployment on both desktops and the web. The user interface of the system and the contents of the databases it supports include country-specific branding and packaging options which have been designed to ensure broad ownership by national authorities. UNICEF has absolutely no restrictions on the database and its use.
The most common DevInfo users include UN country teams, national statistical offices, planning ministries, and district planners. Frequent users also comprise members of the media (for reporting and tracking human development data), educational institutions (for analyzing data and helping students gain data access), as well as DevInfo administrators (in particular for customizing the system or adding data through advanced database administration modules).
DevInfo will contribute to setting universal standards for data storage, access and dissemination on human development indicators, specifically the MDGs. The long-term vision for DevInfo is for the system to make a major contribution to strengthening the processes at country level for use of data for planning, monitoring and advocacy. Visit http://www.devinfo.org/ for more details or to request a copy of the latest version of the software.