Intercept: Proposal for infoDev activity

Comparison and relationship to other information products

Inclusive data management framework: The difference of this product/service from other existing information services, and hence the viability of the product/service, is highly dependent on integration of several processes, in particular:

  • Information-gathering through contact with those most motivated to provide the information, usually involving free exchange of information.
  • Processing of the information to ensure a quality product/service conforming to particular standards of presentation.
  • Delivery of information in a manner that assists location and application of information relevant to the user, and facilitates location of other information sources.
  • Marketing of information products/services to ensure that users know what information is available and where to find it.
  • Programmes to update and review information regularly, working in collaboration with a wide range of other organisations.
  • End-user interaction with the project to identify most appropriate source material for best use application in the target sectors of developing countries.
  • Developing interfaces between the non-automated, conventional communications and automated (Internet and email) users.

Competitive advantage: To some extent, there will inevitably be competition with alternative information sources, including regional databases and subsidised (inter)governmental services. INTERCEPT will, nonetheless, be designed to interface effectively with other services available through the Internet. It is intended to complement and interrelate, rather than duplicate, other available information sources.

A competitive advantage of this INFO2000/INTERCEPT service is that it is less subject to the political and commercial whims which govern the production cycles, content, coverage and updating of other sources. The principal project partners have demonstrated their commitment to long-term management and improved delivery of this type of information content. It is their core business. Moreover, they do this as a public service but from a small-enterprise philosophy that is a hybrid of the "non-profit"/"for-profit" approach, and which itself models successful activity on the boundary between the traditional NGO and commercial worlds.

Attractiveness to users: With respect to information content, the principal advantage of the INTERCEPT package is a long-term comprehensiveness of coverage that it is difficult for competing products to match when faced with short-term policy and commercial constraints. The interactive feedback interface with end-users in the target sectors in developing countries is distinct from the style currently adopted by existing governmental and commercial information sources.

INTERCEPT will provide access to "alive" (current, relevant, responsive) information and interaction among environmental professionals and agencies in developing and developed countries, acknowledging the global market place for environmental services and promoting a global approach to project and programme planning.

Besides its activities in the three target sectors (government, non-government and commercial), infoDev’s INTERCEPT will provide a broad range of free-access information (publicly available) to educational, research and non-profit organisations.