Spatial Data Infra...

Spatial Data Infrastructure for Monitoring Development Outcomes in Uganda

This report, part of the Spatial Data Infrastructure for Development (SDI4MDGs) project, draws lessons from international SDI trends to navigate and propose a long-term architecture for a National Spatial Data Infrastructure in Uganda.

SDI has been identified as an effective tool for monitoring development outcomes, including MDGs, in Uganda, this can be best applied by the Land Information Systems, National cadastres, environmental management, the electoral process, education, healthcare, e-government services and transportation planning . Common to programme planning across many of these services is the setting of quantitative and qualitative objectives and regularly measuring progress towards them. There are a number of isolated activities and initiatives in Uganda that are directed to the realization of SDI objectives. These include using GIS tools to collect, analyze and publish data as well as setting up programs.

This study found that most of these SDI related projects are donor funded, therefore, making it important for the government to set up a body that oversees SDI related activities such as monitoring and evaluation of development funds, leadership, legal framework, technology, policy and legislations regarding spatial data in the country.

There are some principles and insights relating to SDI to follow as a result of the lessons learnt. There is particular need to remain sensitive to momentum and ensure SDI implementation sustainability through successive, smaller, “quick win” deliverables. As far as possible, leverage and build on the existing efforts, structures, and institutional arrangements. There is need to be sensitive and have a mitigation plan for technological challenges during the early phases of SDI implementation activities.

While the longer-term architecture and application areas of an SDI will be generic and cross-disciplinary, focus initially on specific application areas that address well-articulated needs. When concrete application areas are absent, SDI initiatives tend to lose traction. A Mitigation plan for technological challenges during the early phases of SDI implementation activities should also be taken care of with legislation as a powerful SDI enabler. All stakeholders therefore, need to be engaged and encouraged to remain at the NSDI table.

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