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Aceh Info 2.0 Assists Greatly in Indonesia’s Post-Tsunami Recovery
Aceh Info 2.0 Assists Greatly in Indonesia’s Post-Tsunami Recovery
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The December 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami off the coast of Sumatra, Indonesia was one of the deadliest natural disasters in history, killing over 225,000 people in 11 countries. The worst-affected part of Indonesia was Aceh, and that too coming on top of nearly three decades of armed conflict in the region.

 

Officials working on recovery operations (post-tsunami and post-conflict) had been struggling to come by reliable and accurate data to guide their policy-making.

 


  Aceh Info 2.0

The data challenges they faced were typical of those encountered in the aftermath of large-scale Officials working on recovery operations (post-tsunami and post-conflict) had been struggling to come by reliable and accurate data to guide their policy-making. The data challenges they faced were typical of those encountered in the aftermath of large-scale natural disasters: lack of data, varying methods of statistical collection from year to year, absence of key planning indicators in the available data, and lack of a centralized database for data from multiple sources.

That’s why Aceh Info 2.0 has come to play a major role in assisting with recovery policy-making. A new user-friendly recovery database, Aceh Info 2.0 was released in July 2008 as a free local adaptation of DevInfo in both desktop and web-based versions (www.acehinfo.nad.go.id). Aceh Info contains data on 280 recovery indicators from over 20 organizations, drawing from regional, national and international sources. The product is supported by the Information and Analysis Section (IAS) of the UN Office of the Recovery Coordinator for Aceh and Nias (UNORC).

 

As Hawi Busa of UNORC-NIAS explains, “We used the DevInfo software as the backdrop for Aceh Info but also tried to adapt the presentation and data to be useful in the context of complex recovery. A lot of analysis and decision-making, therefore, had to be made before the product could be introduced. Our pre-work involved soliciting input from a number of


   Population Size, Jumlah

thematic experts and analysts. Together we sifted through countless data points—all with an eye to delivering a product useful to the recovery of Aceh and Nias.”

 

Accordingly, Aceh Info derives its indicators not only from the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) but also from the Tsunami Recovery Impact Assessment and Monitoring System (TRIAMS), which was endorsed by the Global Consortium for Tsunami-Affected Countries in June and September 2005. The data, wherever possible, has been disaggregated geographically by administrative area, sex, age group, and urban-rural classification. With Aceh Info, users can easily access all relevant data for recovery decision-making and repackage it into visually-attractive tables, graphs, and maps—with just a few simple mouse clicks. The fact that the product is freely available in both Indonesian and English makes it useful not only for regional and national policy-makers but also for international ones as well.

 

Given the popularity and usefulness of the product in the region, Aceh Info 2.0 has generated a great deal of interest outside Aceh. Leaders from various national Indonesian

    
   Percentage of Households with Basic Sanitation,        2006-07

government agencies met with UNORC officials in June 2008 to discuss the possibility of expanding the product to cover other regions of Indonesia.

 

UNORC-IAS is currently planning to expand the database to cover 500 indicators as well as additional time series. The new release, Aceh Info 3.0, promises to deliver an even more comprehensive package for policy-makers to guide their continued recovery efforts in the region.