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UNOSD and sustainable development knowledge and information sharing

The United Nations Office for Sustainable Development (UNOSD, www.unosd.org) supports U.N. Member States in planning and implementing sustainable development strategies, notably through knowledge sharing, research, training and partnership building. For its knowledge sharing activities the UNOSD collects information on sustainable development related actors (organizations, networks, individuals) and artefacts (Web sites, Web platforms, projects, documents, publications, training courses, events etc.). A part of this data is already distributed through www.sdtweb.org .

The presentation will discuss the challenges of information and knowledge management in today’s complex environment, using a container-contents-community model. In particular, after analyzing the specific issues of information and knowledge management in Sustainable Development, it presents the challenges of each component. The container needs to 1)take into account the data architecture of the entities mentioned above, 2) allow easy data update by non specialist (CMS-style) and 3) relevant visualisations of complex quantitative and qualitative data. In addition, we need a process of constant refresh of the contents, in particular time dependent content (events, training courses) based on a blend of automated data extraction (Web mining) and crowdsourcing (which will need a gamification-type motivating component, as the potential targeted crowdsourcing population are the student and youth who would be potentially receptive to this approach). 

Dr. Calin Alexandru Toma, MBA is Information Technology for Development Expert with the United Nations Office of Sustainable Development, based in Incheon, Republic of Korea.

Over the past 20 years he has worked in IT in consulting companies, the International Atomic Energy Agency, the Quebec Ministry of Health and Social Services and in the United Nations Secretariat in New York. He has mostly worked as enterprise architect and on the conceptual, logical and physical implementation of databases for organizational information systems and knowledge management. He has also taught graduate courses in data mining, business intelligence and advanced information systems in the Laval University, Quebec, Canada.

His current function is to provide information systems and technology expertise and support in the management of development strategy and the implementation of sustainable development programs. Dr. Toma holds a Ph.D. in Quantitative Hydrology and Hydrogeology from the Ecole des Mines de Paris France and an MBA in Information Technology Management from Laval University, Quebec, Canada.