By Lisa Wright, Assistant Director General, Communications, Ministerial and Transparency Branch, AusAID
The Australian Development Gateway (ADG) website was created in 2004 to make Australian research by Australian institutions more accessible to developing economies, particularly in the Asia-Pacific region. The main objectives of this AusAID-funded initiative were to provide relevant and quality information and knowledge, and facilitate sharing of information among its members.
Since that time, social networking and knowledge sharing sites and technologies have grown in functionality and popularity. There are now many other options available to share knowledge online, from informal social networks to professional communities of practice and e-learning opportunities. A recent comprehensive independent review demonstrated that the need for the ADG website has declined.
Following internal and external consultation and taking into account the recommendations of the independent review, AusAID has decided not to continue funding the ADG. This means that from 30 June 2012, the website will no longer be available.
What does this mean for those who regularly use the ADG website and are keen to stay informed about aid and development?
AusAID would like to acknowledge those who have made a contribution to the ADG—your efforts are appreciated. We will review the ADG website’s content and look at how we can republish relevant and interesting information using our online channels. At its inception, the ADG was at the forefront of information communications technology, providing an online community of practice and expertise that was largely unparalleled. This could only have been achieved with your contribution and ongoing support.
AusAID’s evolving online presence and social networks now allow us to offer more ways to involve you in our work. Like this blog, for example. It was launched in November last year and provides an alternative way to interact with people who are interested in aid and development.
The new look AusAID website was launched last month. Supported by the latest technology, the new design helps us increase our transparency, present information in a dynamic and engaging way, and improve accessibility for website visitors.
AusAID’s online communication channels will continue to evolve, and we are pursuing ongoing improvement through consultation and best practice. If you have ideas or suggestions, I encourage you to leave a comment.