Software Coding

PHP Coding in the Cloud for Google App Engine

I love my Chromebook, and the whole idea of cloud computing. It’s great to have a single-login to GSuite (formerly Google Apps), and custom web-apps that easily integrate. But coding on my Chromebook has been — well — awkward. There are a number of Cloud-based IDEs (Cloud9, Codenvy), but none that really integrate well with Google App Engine.

One would think Google would provide great web-based tools. Maybe, probably, someday. But meanwhile – here is one way how to do it with the “basics” — GitHub (or other git repository) — and Google’s Cloud Shell.

    1. Create a Google App Engine Project (GAE).  You’ll need a unique name – like zork23 – it will wind up as zork23.appspot.com.
    2. Create a zork23 project on GitHub under youraccount on github, and you can edit the code right there on GitHub.
    3. Log into your Google Cloud Console and click on the Cloud Shell icon at right.

    shell

    1. You are now at a terminal of your very own virtual linux computer, with git and the gcloud tools installed. You can use git to manage a local copy of your app, and then use gcloud to deploy. A quick-start example of doing so with a python app is here.
    2. I had never used git from the command line before. To get your app, you clone it into your virtual computer computer:
      >cd ~/src
      >git clone https://youraccount@github.com/youraccount/zork23.git
    3. If you’ve worked with Google App Engine before, you’ve probably deployed using a tool called appcfg.py which references a special configuration file called app.yaml. gcloud has a few different requirements – you cannot specify the application name or the version in the app.yaml file. Instead you do:
      > cd ~/src/zork23
      > gcloud app deploy  ./app.yaml  –project=zork23  –version=1
    4. Then — you can jump back and forth between editing in github, and using the uparrow to keep running shell commands for updating:
      > git pull https://youraccount@github.com/youraccount/zork23.git
      > gcloud app deploy ./app.yaml –project=zork23 –version=1

    It really should not have to be this way, of course – both github and google could just have a nice little button that does this. But, in the meantime, this works smoothly for me.

Uncategorized

Alianza por la salud alimentaria

México DF A 20 de Junio del 2014

Dr. Graziano Da Silva

Director General de la Organización de las Naciones Unidas

para la Agricultura y la Alimentación (FAO)

Presente.-

 

Estimado Dr. Graziano Da Silva

 

A través de la presente, organizaciones y movimientos de la sociedad civil queremos compartir nuestra consternación acerca de lo importante que es mantener a las Grandes Industrias fuera de las discusiones internacionales. México es hoy un ejemplo de la interferencia de estas corporaciones trasnacionales y el impacto que esto tiene en la salud de la población. La situación alimentaria actual en nuestro país y en gran parte de los países del mundo se encuentra en un grave deterioro, por lo que es imprescindible actuar e impulsar todas las medidas necesarias para recuperar la salud alimentaria en base a sistemas alimentarios sustentables.

 

La rica y equilibrada dieta tradicional de México, basada en la diversidad cultural y biológica del territorio nacional y centrada en el cultivo de la milpa, ha sido quebrantada por la invasión de alimentos altamente procesados, de tal forma que en la actualidad contamos con el siguiente panorama:

 

*   En México las primeras causas de muerte son por diabetes y enfermedades cardiovasculares (ECV), el 10% de las muertes por diabetes y ECV son causados por consumo de bebidas azucaradas. La mayor parte del presupuesto en salud se utiliza para padecimientos como diabetes y ECV. El costo total de tratar enfermedades relacionadas con sobrepeso y obesidad asciende a $80 mil millones de pesos al año en nuestro país, el cual llegará a $150 mil millones en 2017 si no se toman acciones preventivas[1].

 

*   El 85% de los recién nacidos son alimentados con fórmula[2], las fórmulas, especialmente las promocionadas para 6 meses en adelante contienen altos porcentajes de azúcar añadida (14 al 27%)[3], casi el 40% de la ingesta calórica total entre los preescolares proviene de productos procesados[4], el 12%4 de la energía total entre los niños y niñas proviene de refrescos; los niños y niñas son sometidos a altas exposiciones de publicidad de productos no saludables, principalmente de refrescos y dulces[5]. En promedio, un niño ve alrededor de 11 comerciales de comida chatarra por hora[6]. Los mexicanos somos los mayores consumidores de refrescos (163 litros por persona al año)[7], de pastelillos procesados, de sopas instantáneas y uno de los mayores consumidores de botanas[8].

 

*   El 75% de la población vive algún tipo de inseguridad alimentaria, 64.8 millones viven en condiciones de pobreza y pobreza extrema (55.3%), 18% de los niños menores de 5 años padecen desnutrición, 34% de los niños y niñas tienen sobrepeso u obesidad, 35% de los adolescentes y el 70 % de los adultos padecen de sobrepeso y obesidad. El 14% tiene diabetes diagnosticada y el 40% síndrome metabólico2.

 

*   En la nueva regulación en materia de etiquetado, sello nutrimental y publicidad dirigida a la infancia se observa la fuerte presencia y presión de la industria, generando confusión entre la población y graves riesgos a la salud al recomendar un requerimiento diario de azúcares añadidos de 90 gramos al día y al poder publicitar productos que porten un sello nutrimental promoviéndolos como saludables cuando no lo son. [9] Otro ejemplo de bloqueos y violaciones es en la falta de cumplimiento del Código Internacional para la Comercialización de Sucedáneos de leche materna, provocando graves consecuencias en los neonatos[10].

 

*   La situación en el campo también es deplorable; mientras millones de pequeños productores agrícolas están sumidos en la pobreza, endeudados y en la ruina, diez grandes empresas agroalimentarias reciben millones de pesos en subsidios por parte del gobierno. Tan sólo en el 2011 Bachoco, Gamesa, Cargill, Gradesa, Maseca, entre otras, recibieron 1,411 millones de pesos en subsidios; mientras que de la población rural nacional, estimada en 27 millones de personas, 18 millones no tienen acceso a la canasta básica, y más del 50 por ciento  son niñas y niños que carecen de la mínima alimentación para desarrollarse[11]. Así mismo las importaciones de productos como maíz, frijol y otros siguen creciendo, mientras que los pequeños y medianos productores trabajan a marchas forzadas y bajo conflictos para comercializar sus productos[12].

 

*   Las grandes corporaciones impulsan políticas que son de riesgo para la agricultura familiar y el bienestar público, con el afán de generar mayores ganancias. Los agricultores milperos, que antes se autoabastecían manteniendo cierta autonomía, han tenido que emigrar por el menoscabo del campo mexicano; y los que se quedan enfrentan el riesgo creciente de la contaminación transgénica de sus milpas. Las transnacionales y el mismo gobierno mexicano buscan imponer el cultivo masivo de maíces genéticamente modificados, que ponen en riesgo la viabilidad completa del país siendo México centro de origen y diversificación continua del maíz. La ciudadanía ha logrado defender los maíces nativos a través de una demanda colectiva contra el maíz transgénico. Ha enfrentado al día de hoy 63 impugnaciones de las corporaciones y del propio gobierno en contra de esta colectividad y de la media cautelar dictada por el juez federal, quien ha suspendido todas las siembras de maíz genéticamente modificado mientras dure el juicio[13]. Pero las presiones y poderes fácticos son cada vez más intensos.

Detrás de este horizonte y estos números hay rostros, sufrimiento humano, violaciones y miles de muertes prevenibles. Estos hechos, entre otros, han conformado un ominoso ambiente obesigénico y de mala nutrición generalizada en el país: un entorno que induce al deterioro de los hábitos alimentarios y que produce sobrepeso, obesidad, diabetes; desprotege a la población, no garantiza los derechos a la información, a la alimentación sana, segura y culturalmente adecuada, al agua, a la salud y a una vida digna.

 

La acción de la Grandes Industrias o las corporaciones ha sido la fuerza más significativa encargada de bloquear los esfuerzos para la regulación en todas las áreas relacionadas con la salud alimentaria,desde el cultivo hasta el consumo.[14],[15]

 

Este proceso ha sido posible gracias la omisión por parte del Estado de su obligación de proteger el derecho a la salud y a la alimentación adecuada de la población mexicana, y sus acciones a favor de los intereses privados por encima del bien común.

 

México es Miembro Estado de las Naciones Unidas; las recomendaciones que se emiten en los distintos órganos internacionales son importantes para nuestro país y son de gran apoyo para que la ciudadanía y que nuestro gobierno cuente con mayores instrumentos para garantizar el bienestar de la población.

 

Es por ello que las organizaciones y movimientos de la sociedad civil solicitamos firmemente a los organismos internacionales:

 

*      Permitir el involucramiento formal de las organizaciones de la sociedad civil y movimientos sociales para el interés público, en las discusiones preliminares y en la Segunda Conferencia Internacional de Nutrición

*      Reconocer la necesidad de clarificar y tomar acción en el tema de Conflictos de Interés tanto individual como institucional.

*      Realizar las decisiones sin involucramiento de la Gran Industria y mantener una política libre de conflicto de interés.

 

Referencias

 

[1] El Poder del Consumidor en: http://elpoderdelconsumidor.org/saludnutricional/10-de-muertes-provocados-por-la-obesidad-en-mexico-se-deben-al-consumo-de-bebidas-azucaradas/ y Mozaffarian, et al. Global Burdens of Disease. 2013.

[2] Gutiérrez JP, Rivera-Dommarco J, Shama-Levy T, Villalpando-Hernández S, Franco A, Cuevas-Nasu L, Romero-Martínez M, Hernández-Ávila M. Encuesta Nacional de Salud y Nutrición 2012. Cuernavaca, Méxic: Instituto Nacional de Salud Pública, 2012.

[3]Calvillo A, Xaviera C, García K. La alimentación industrializada del lactante y niño pequeño , el nuevo mega negocio. El Poder del Consumidor 2013. México DF.

[4]González-Castell D, González-Cossio T, Barquera S et al. Alimentos industrializados en la dieta de los preescolares mexicanos.SaludPúblicaMex 2007;49:345-356

[5]Instituto Nacional de Salud Pública. Publicidad de alimentos y bebidas. Disponible en: http://www.insp.mx/epppo/blog/2984-publicidad-alimentos-bebidas.html

[6]El Poder del Consumidor. La Publicidad de comida chatarra dirigida a la infancia en México. Octubre 2010

[7] Euromonitor 2009

[8] Revista del Consumidor de la Procuraduría Federal del Consumidor PROFECO. Reporte de pastelillos empacados. Disponible en: http://revistadelconsumidor.gob.mx/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/RC445_Pastelitos.pdf

[9]Impera caos y contradicción en los criterios de gobierno para combatir la obesidad. El Poder del Consumidor. Disponible en: http://elpoderdelconsumidor.org/saludnutricional/impera-caos-y-contradiccion-en-el-combate-gubernamental-la-obesidad/

[10]Calvillo A, Xaviera C, García K Cesáreas y lactancia materna, las primeras causas de la epidemia de obesidad en México. El Poder del Consumidor 2013. México

[11]Alonso-Sánchez LM. Millones en pobreza, 10 grandes empresas absorben subsidio. El Punto Crítico. 2012

[12]Vargas U. En riesgo más de 150 mil toneladas de manzana. El Barzón, México. 2013. Disponible en: http://elbarzon.mx/2014/03/en-riesgo-mas-de-150-mil-toneladas-de-manzana-el-barzon-chihuahua/

[13]San Vicente A. La defensa de nuestro maíz contra los transgénicos. Blog El Universal. 2013. México. Disponible en: http://blogs.eluniversal.com.mx/weblogs_detalle20220.html

[14] Bellagio Declaration 2013. Disponible en: http://bellagioobesity2013.web.unc.edu/files/2013/11/bellagio_declaration_11-11-13.pdf. Fecha de consulta: 10/01/14.

[15]Organización Mundial de la Salud. WHO Director-General addresses health promotion conference. Disponible en: http://www.who.int/dg/speeches/2013/health_promotion_20130610/en/. Fecha de consulta: 10/01/14.

 

 

Organizaciones y Movimientos de la Sociedad Civil que suscribimos el presente comunicado

Uncategorized

1000 Days in Senegal

Regarding SUN

1)    Are any country directors or members of their staff (other than Mozambique) currently engaged in SUN/1,000 Days advocacy at the national level?

Réponse:

Pour le SUN au Sénégal, il s’agit d’un mouvement des organisations de la société civile qui se sont structurées pour le moment en groupe d’initiatives pour contribuer à la promotion de la nutrition. Ce mouvement doit évoluer vers une plateforme des acteurs de la société civile pour la nutrition. Le travail de plaidoyer n’a pas encore commencé au niveau du SUN/senegal.

THPsenegal vient d’être admis comme nouveau membre du SUN depuis seulement un mois. THPsn a été parrainé par l’ONG 3D qui est déjà membre du SUN senegal.

Concernant les 1000 jours, le travail de plaidoyer a été effectué au niveau de tous les épicentres.

 

2)    What specifically are they working on?

Réponse:

L’équipe de THP senegal a beaucoup travaillé sur le programme de 1000 jours. Dans chaque épicentre, il est organisé un rassemblement pour faire le plaidoyer en présence d’autorités coutumières, religieuses et administratives pour faciliter la compréhension des méfaits de la malnutrition entre 0 et 2 ans. Dans l’épicentre de Nderereppe ce grand groupe qui intègre tous les chefs de villages et les représentants de l’Etat se réunit tous les trimestres pour faire une évaluation de la lutte contre la malnutrition.

Aussi tous les animateurs (en santé, en WEP, en VEA …) et autres femmes leaders des groupements ont été informés et formés par les spécialistes en santé sur  les relations qui existent entre la malnutrition des enfants et le développement de ces enfants malnutris. Il y a donc eu un plaidoyer très fort envers les communautés qui se fait.

Aussi THP a organisé des séances de démonstration culinaires au niveau des épicentres, pour apprendre aux parents les meilleurs repas pour enfants adaptés au contexte et qui sont faits à base de produits locaux. THp senegal a utilisé les services de spécialistes issus des instituts de recherche alimentaire.

Aussi THP senegal distribue de la farine d’enfants (fabriquée dans un épicentre de Mpal)  pour la prise en charge des enfants malnutris. Ce produit est mis en place chaque trimestre dans les épicentres.

Des animations sont menées directement  au profit des communautés (surtout aux femmes enceintes et aux femmes allaitantes)  pour leur permettre de respecter les consignes données pour assurer une bonne nutrition dans les 1000 premiers jours.

Dans 3 épicentres, il y a un club dans chaque village qui prend en charge et organise les personnes concernées  (femmes enceintes, mère des enfants de moins de 2 ans) pour la préparation des repas destinés aux enfants et pour la répartition des farines d’aliments distribuée par THPsenegal.  Chaque club est doté du matériel de pesage et de registre qui permet de suivre l’évolution de l’état général de chaque enfant du village.

 

3)    I’m wanting to give the grant reader some concrete/measurable examples of what can come of successful SUN advocacy. I’m wondering whether any of these might be examples worth mentioning:

National level adoption of iodization of salt?

L’utilisation du sel iodé est effective pour environ 50 à 60% des populations au Senegal. En effet ce résultat est obtenu par l’introduction des bonnes pratiques de l’iodisation du sel au près des petits producteurs de sel qui ont été formés et qui sont aujourd’hui équipés de matériels d’iodisation. Le sel disponible et utilisé au Sénégal par les populations est généralement iodé. Cependant le problème de conservation du sel iodé se pose et généralement le mauvais stockage du produit entraine la dégradation et la disparition de l’iode.

Adoption of International Code of Marketing of Breast Milk Substitutes?

Le senegal a adopté une politique Nationale d’allaitement maternel et de bonnes pratiques du sevrage en 1994 et la même année ( le 25 juillet 1994) le senegal a dégagé un arrêté d’application du code International de commercialisation des substituts du lait maternel.

 

Appointment of national level breastfeeding coordinator?

Il existe une cellule nationale de Lutte contre la malnutrition (CLM) qui se charge aussi de l’allaitement maternel exclusif dans tout le pays. Ce bureau national est logé dans le cabinet du premier ministre. Il est aussi chargé d’assurer le secrétariat du SUN

En plus de cette structure, il y a la direction de la santé de la reproduction et de la survie de l’enfant qui assure la coordination des actions en faveur de la promotion de l’allaitement maternel exclusif. Au Sénégal l’allaitement maternel est pratiqué par 99% des femmes mais l’allaitement maternel exclusif est pratiqué par seulement 39% des femmes .

Le senegal a un plan de communication sur l’allaitement maternel exclusif, élaboré en  2007 par le ministère de la Santé.

 

Regarding Essential Nutrition Actions

Are there typical/indigenous crops that contain iodine? Or, are our Epicenter communities dependent on salt for their iodine?

Non,  je ne connais pas de cultures ayant un contenu important d’iode au senegal. Et donc les besoins en iode des communautés sont bien dépendants de l’iode contenu dans le sel.

Are any Animators doing trainings on preparing ready to use therapeutic foods for kids with severe acute malnutrition? What is a typical response to severe acute malnutrition in an Epicenter community?

Dans les épicentres, THp senegal a mis en place un système de complément nutritionnel dans le centre de santé. Les enfants malnutris bénéficient de ces aliments gratuitement. Aussi les animateurs et les femmes ont reçu des formations sur la préparation d’aliments adaptés pour la bonne santé des enfants. Pour ces formations THP recrute des spécialistes chargés de la recherche alimentaire qui enseignent des plats spéciaux pour prévenir la malnutrition en utilisant des produits locaux et pas chers pour les familles pauvres.

Quand un enfant est atteint de malnutrition sévère il est traité par le centre de santé pour recevoir des soins spécialisés. En effet, tous les services de santé au senegal disposent de  traitements spéciaux contre la malnutrition sévère aigue. Ce qui fait que THPsn n’est pas habilité à traiter des cas de malnutrition sévère aigue.

Donc l’intervention de THPsn dans les épicentres porte essentiellement sur la prévention de la malnutrition par la sensibilisation, l’information et le plaidoyer. En plus de cela il y a l’appui en farine enrichie pour les enfants des épicentres menacés de malnutrition.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Are any country directors or members of their staff (other than Mozambique) currently engaged in SUN/1,000 Days advocacy at the national level?

Ans: THP-E is not currently engaged advocating SUN/1,000 days at national level, but working on the program at all THP-E epicenters.

What specifically are they working on?

THP-E facilitate and support training mothers (pregnant and mothers with child less than 2 year child) and health extension agents on nutritional feeding knowhow and health care practice in collaboration with district health office.

 

I’m wanting to give the grant reader some concrete/measurable examples of what can come of successful SUN advocacy.  I’m wondering whether any of these might be examples worth mentioning:  national level adoption of iodization of salt? Adoption of International Code of Marketing of Breast Milk Substitutes? Appointment of national level breastfeeding coordinator?

Ans: Ethiopia developed obligational standard for imported and locally produced salt, has to be iodized before year’s period. There is also not iodized salt in the market and poor people preferred it than iodized one for its lesser market price.

Ethiopia is working and advocating through media and village health extension agent on the importance of breast milk for child health (mothers advised to feed only their breast milk until the age of 6 months) and additional nutritional diet after six months period.

We have no idea on the rest points requested here.

 

Regarding Essential Nutrition Actions

Are there typical/indigenous crops that contain iodine? Or, are our Epicenter communities dependent on salt for their iodine?

Ans: by nature iodine expected to be available in the soil and the harvestable crop part for human conception expected to contain the required quantity of iodine for normal body growth. But due to erosion and poor soil management and conservation practice in most part of the country it is assumed no enough amount of iodine will be gained from consumed food. Salt by its nature has no enough iodine for body requirement; rather the iodine is gained form iodized salt during salt production process. Therefor our Epicenter community iodine source is iodized salt from market despite price preference for not iodized salt.

 

Are any Animators doing trainings on preparing ready to use therapeutic foods for kids with severe acute malnutrition?

Ans: No, such activity is managed through government program and therapeutic food for children supplied from industry products by government when there is prevalence situation or acute malnutrition case detected. But there is a case in some situation at poor family where has no the capacity to feed enough amount for their family, which is not normally covered by government program.

 

What is a typical response to severe acute malnutrition in an Epicenter community?

If severe malnutrition detected, the case is covered through the country food aid program and sometimes if the problem is observed on children the case is covered through health program. Our Epicenter community also treated same.

 

 

 

Tel :
+221-33-836-30-90
+221-77-649-80-98
+221-70-105-67-12

Email:ibrahimaenda3d@yahoo.fr

 

Bonjour , M. Dicko et le Dr Coonrod .
Je travaille à travers un récit réutilisable concentrés sur notre approche des 1000 jours .
J’ai quelques questions pour vous –
SUN concernant
Y at-il des directeurs de pays ou des membres de leur personnel ( autres que le Mozambique ) a engagés dans SUN / 1000 Journées de sensibilisation au niveau national ?
Qu’est-ce spécifiquement travaillent-ils ?
Je suis désireux de donner au lecteur de subvention des exemples concrets / mesurable de ce qui peut venir de succès plaidoyer de SUN . Je me demande si l’un de ces exemples pourraient être dignes de mention : l’adoption au niveau national de l’iodation du sel ? Adoption du Code international de commercialisation des substituts du lait maternel ? Nomination du coordonnateur national de l’allaitement maternel au niveau ?
En ce qui concerne Actions Essentielles en Nutrition
Y at-il des cultures autochtones / typiques qui contiennent de l’iode ? Ou sont nos communautés Epicenter dépend de sel pour leur iode ?
Y at-il des animateurs qui font des formations sur la préparation prête à utiliser des aliments thérapeutiques pour les enfants souffrant de malnutrition aiguë sévère ?
Quelle est la réaction habituelle de la malnutrition aiguë sévère dans une communauté de Epicenter ?
Merci à vous deux !
jasa

M&E

Analyzing Survey Monkey Data in LongJump

I recently spent a few days analyzing the data from our global Survey Monkey survey of participatory local democracy for our project with UNDEF. It’s awkward. Both systems are wonderful for what they do (collect and hold data), but are not terribly user friendly at complex data manipulation.

(Update 8/14) The wonderful Alice Patrick at LongJump has let us know that there is a third way to do analysis in LongJump – formulas in fields – that will be ideal for us. see http://lj.platformatyourservice.com/wiki/Formula_Fields for details)

Here is the approach I took. I’m writing it up so that (a) those wiser than me can make suggestions and (b) those struggling with it for the first time can avoid my mistakes.

Mistakes we should have avoided with Survey Monkey

1) The only good way to handle the “I don’t know” option is to make the question non-required, and let “no answer” mean “I don’t know.” For example, if you give people the options:

How good is it? [ ] Poor, [ ] Mediocre, [ ] Good, [ ] Great, [ ] I don’t know

then when you download the data in numerical (rather than word) mode, you’ll get a score from 1-5 where “I don’t know” is 5.

2) Be very clear about single-answer choices and multi-answer check boxes. In 3 of our 4 languages, we asked for people’s employment sector with multi-answer check boxes, which results in one data column per option, rather than a simple 1 column answer. VERY tedious to analyze.

3) Doing multiple languages? Make SURE the columns align! We did surveys in four languages, and each one had a few subtle changes resulting in a different number of columns, making it a pain to combine the data into one database.

4) Using text boxes for numbers. We asked for people to fill in approximately how many days does it take to get a response from the government. Some people were obliging and put “7” or “150” – but some wrote “forever!!!” or “it depends” which is very hard to analyze mathematically. Anything with a range of numbers should be made into a multiple choice.

5) Using text boxes for indicating country. Similar problem. We should NEVER use text boxes in surveys. How many ways can people spell Senegal? Plenty! Things like name, country, email should be handled with their demographics tools.

6) Understanding the difference between complete and incomplete survey. I would think there would be a way to download ONLY completed surveys, but apparently not, so you need to manually bring the data first into Excel, delete lines that are incomplete, and then upload to the database.

Long Jump Import

You export data from SurveyMonkey (or IFormBuilder) as an excel spreadsheet, using the “compressed” and “data only” options.

Open the spreadsheet, and create database field names you want in the first row.

Survey Monkey data has two rows of headers, containing all the text for the survey. You will want to insert a new line for the database column names – one short word – I used the question number, like Q01, Q02a, Q02b etc to align simply with the form. If you’ve analyzed this survey before, you can simply copy and paste that first line into the new spreadsheet.

Longjump will ask you whether data are numbers, numbers with decimals, text, dates, emails, etc. Set each response column to number. If you are importing dates, they MUST be in American format (mm/dd/yyyy).

Long Jump Analysis

One thing I learned from 45 years of computer programming is “don’t be clever” – be boringly simple and consistent.

You analyze data in Long Jump be creating a report. Just as you can fill excel cells with formulas, you can put formulas into columns in longjump.

There are two places to do this FIELDS and COMPUTE. FIELDS is row by row, and COMPUTE is for GROUPS of rows (in our case, grouped by country).

FIELDS TAB

In the “fields” tab, you first pull all the database fields you will be using in calculations into the list, and then you click on the link that says “New Computed Field.” If you cannot use the raw response as it is, you can create a new version of the field. For example, in the “Good/Great/Don’t know” example above, I created a new field R5 with this calculation:

if(q05=5,0,q05)

which means if the person said I don’t know, treat it as zero, otherwise use what you’ve got.

You can use this powerfully with iFormBuilder if you forgot to set it up to pass numbers instead of words, like this

if(q05=’I don’t know’,0,if(q05=’Great’,4,if(q05=’Good’,3,if(q05=’Mediocre’,2,1))))

If the answers are long, you can use the “Contains” function to trigger numbers on key words

You need to create another computed field – the number of non-zero answers. Why? Because if you want to average the answers, you don’t want to include the zeros. For example, if two people say great and two don’t know, the average needs to be great (4) not mediocre (2).

LongJump really should offer the NZA (non-zero-average) function automatically – I’m lobbying for it – but until then, for any column like this, you need to create something like N5

if(q05=0||q05=5,0,1)

That is, if it’s zero or 5 don’t count it, else count it.

Good vs. Bad: some times our scales were for things that were bad for our index – it was at this level that I created new computed fields that turned everything into a similar positive scale.

COMPUTE TAB

After you tell it how to group the data, then you can tell what to compute. In my case, I wanted to create averages each cluster of answers. Let’s say the raw data runs from 1-4 in each of 5 answers (for a total range of 0-20), we would do the following calculation…

Cluster1:

5*(total(R5)/total(N5)+total(R6)/(total(N6)+total(R7)/total(N7)+total(R8)/total(N8)+total(R9)/(total(N9))

Unfortunately, LongJump won’t let you simply type this (yet, I’m lobbying…) – it gives them a long name like custom_column_r5_14 which you get from a pull-down menu. But it’s not bad – just annoying.

BUGS IN LONGJUMP

I found several instances where, after filling in formulas in the COMPUTE tab, if I needed to go back and correct something in the FIELDS tab, it wouldn’t let me do it. This doesn’t always happen. I had to copy the COMPUTE formulas on a piece of paper, delete them, fix the FIELDS, then go back and put the COMPUTE formulas back.

I also had trouble empyting and re-importing data. It creates indexes that need to get deleted after data is deleted – not sure how or why -and then it doesn’t automatically align columns – you have to create a mapping table using pull downs for every field, which is REALLY tedious.  Easier to just create a whole new object.

Speeches

Remarks at “Sustaining Political Commitments to Scaling Up Nutrition”

For information on the conference, click here. I spoke as a member of a panel representing the 30+ InterAction members making a $750 million nutrition pledge at the June 8 Nutrition for Growth conference in London.

Thanks, Sam – THP is proud to be part of InterAction and of this pledge.

Our mission is to pioneer bottom-up, gender-focused strategies for integrated rural development – and advocate for their large-scale adoption. We have mobilized the people of more than 20,000 villages across 12 countries of Latin America, South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa to take charge of their own development and make their villages work.

Nutrition is a major challenge for bottom-up development. It’s not a felt need. People don’t feel it, see it or prioritize it the way they do education, income, water or primary health care.

When SUN was launched, our global board of directors made achieving a breakthrough in 1,000 Day nutrition – in all the areas where we work – a top priority in our strategic plan.

Our starting point is the recognition that malnutrition in the 1,000 Day window is fundamentally a gender issue. Girls eat last and least. They are pulled out of school to work in the home. Girls are married too young, and have babies before their bodies are fully developed.

We tackle the gender components with gender training for the thousands of local volunteer animators – both women and men – who educate everyone in their community that the health of everyone depends on the nutrition of girls.

We train thousands of local women leaders who mount campaigns to halt child marriage, promote good 1000-day nutrition and good pre-natal care for all pregnant mothers, and ensure safe water supply, safe sanitation, and good hygiene.

One of the keys of our strategies is to build a strong, responsive partnership between grassroots level government and the people. We are working with the nurse-midwives at our community health centers to provide good 1,000 Days nutrition knowledge to pregnant and nursing mothers.
At our community training farms in Africa, farmers learn to grow and process nutritious crops, and with microfinance, they’ve diversified local diets with more protein.

Government nurses and farm extension agents are in short supply. We leverage their expertise by training volunteer health and agriculture animators who can reach everyone in the surrounding villages.

We are not technical experts. Our expertise is social mobilizing and empowering people. So we partner with local experts to train our animators in Essential Nutrition Actions.

NGOs know that our work, alone, is never enough. Our central role is to empower people to know their rights, find their voice and build institutions that work for everyone. Our country directors and staff – all local – are joining the SUN Civil Society platforms and getting a seat at the policy table – bringing what we’ve learned works to country-led strategies. With their leadership and our collective support, we can ensure country-led strategies are effective, and truly put the end of malnutrition within our reach.

(End)

Gender, Policy Recommendations

Gender and Development in the Hillary Time-Out: Advancing the Unfinished Agenda

It was sad to see TV pundits who I admire stroke their chin and say “No, we don’t see any signature achievement of Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State.”

Nonsense! I’m no expert on geopolitics, but from where I sit, Hillary Clinton dramatically tackled the central moral issue of our age – the subjugation and disempowerment of women and girls. As a correlate, she began to move the “soft power” of diplomacy and development closer to equal status with defense.

Female presidents and prime ministers rarely do much on gender, other than hold a traditionally male seat. Yet Secretary Clinton moved gender issues from the sidelines to the forefront of policies not only in the world’s sole super power, but also in the wider world community.

How different life is today than it was four years ago. Four years ago, we could not imagine hundreds of thousands in the streets of India, the bastion of patriarchy, demanding a halt to rape. Major global institutions, which formerly treated gender as a sideline, now put the issue front and center.

I remember hearing some of Secretary Clinton’s fiery first speeches on women’s rights – and then seeing how the State Department staff would water them down in news releases. She didn’t let that gap last long – bringing in some of the best and brightest young women in America to gently but firmly shepherd all agencies with international programs into alignment and concerted action.

Since I believe that anything important can fit in a top-10 list, here are my top 10 areas where gender has dramatically advanced in the past four years, and what I believe still needs to be done.

While many of these key achievements have been institutionalized, hopefully with some momentum, we may see continued progress even as the momentum may slow. Those of us committed to the issue will perhaps need to shake ourselves awake to the need to redouble our own leadership to build on the momentum, and not merely pray for a 2016 Clinton presidency.

#1 Nutrition: Nutrition is a gender issue. The future health of all of us is largely determined in the womb. And far too many mothers have had a lifetime of undernutrition – eating last and least, denied health care and education, and married far too young. Secretary Clinton brought her leadership to the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) movement, ensuring that the top priority be shifted to the nutrition of pregnant and nursing mothers during the critical 1,000 Day Window.  The countries with the most malnutrition, however, have not yet joined the SUN movement, and determined diplomatic leadership is still needed.

#2 Food Security: The world financial crisis was concurrent with a world food price crisis, and the Obama administration led the G8 in reversing decades of declining investment. It was an honest debate: was the answer to invest heavily in big agriculture, or empower the small-scale farmers who grow most of the food, who themselves represent most of the hunger, the majority of whom are women? On Hillary’s watch, women farmers won, and US policy has new, strong gender policies and innovative metrics. Implementation to date, however, is spotty and does not come close to meeting the “Bostrup Test” of ensuring the majority of resources are targeted to women, as anything less will actually widen the gender gap. Champions of this issue must keep pressing for strong and effective implementation.

#3 Global Health: Both the US and the UN took action to address the most egregious gap between rich and poor – the lack of progress in reducing appalling rates of maternal mortality. The laudable investments in halting AIDS had the unintended consequence of sucking talent out of community health, and Hillary led the charge for a Global Health Initiative (GHI) that would channel AIDS and other resources into strengthening health systems, with a focus on women and children. Again, implementation is lagging and the initial vision of women-centered health-system strengthening has faded. We need more, compelling dialog with disease-focused practitioners who fully understand and champion the GHI approach.

#4 Integration: Hillary Clinton did not invent the “whole of government” approach, but she adopted it powerfully, and led US development policy to favor integrated strategies over siloes. Integrated strategies are tremendously important from a gender perspective, as impoverished women bear an integrated (and unjust) set of burdens that can only be effectively addressed with holistic strategies, while patriarchal power generally runs in siloes. Integration, however, so runs counter to bureaucracy that this is a huge lift, and has barely begun. We need much more direct and compelling evidence and arguments for the importance of integrated strategies.

#5 Women’s Political Leadership: Hillary is the ultimate rock star to women in public life, and the appointment of Melanne Verveer – her former chief of staff and founder of Vital Voices – to be our first Ambassador-at-large on global women’s issues gave a huge boost to this issue. Amb. Verveer traveled to 60 countries encouraging women at all levels of decision-making leadership, including some of the poorest villages of India and Bangladesh. Investing in the capacity building of emerging women leaders and their organizations, however, has fallen off the agenda and – in the aftermath of the Arab Spring, is more important than ever.

#6 Women, Peace and Security:  Women’s role in the military has transformed, and the US now has a National Action Plan for increasing women’s role in peace building, consistent with UN resolution 1325. I don’t believe the media or general public – here and abroad – understand how strategically important this is to resolving some of the most dangerous conflicts in our world, and all of us need to get the mic and build public support for this initiative.

#7 Gender-based violence: All forms of gender discrimination are held in place by violence and the threat of violence. Extraordinary progress has been made worldwide in the past four years – a horribly divided Congress has renewed the Violence Against Women Act. Making real progress requires profound social, political and judicial transformation, and this will require sustained, unyielding pressure, year after year.

#8 Economic opportunity: This past September, Secretary Clinton launched the Equal Futures Partnership, to enhance education and economic opportunity for women and girls. Implementation of the initiative is unclear.

#9 UN Women: The US has championed the creation of a major enhancement of the UN’s ability to tackle gender issues. Yet the US Senate has never ratified CEDAW or even the Convention on the Rights of the Child, undermining our nation’s moral authority. UN Women was launched with great fanfare, but its capacity and funding are still very weak. We should support Senator Kerry in using his good will with the Senate to get movement on these fronts.

#10 Data and Evidence: US development agencies have made great progress in the past four years in their commitment to monitoring, evaluation and transparency with major emphasis on gender disaggregated data. Last July, Secretary Clinton launched Data 2x a new initiative with the World Bank, the UN, and OECD to greatly increase the amount and quantity of gender data. A progress report is due next July, and no news of the initiative has appeared since the launch.

Conclusion

The name of the game for the next four years is implementation, implementation, and implementation. There are small groups of champions in each of these ten areas, but it would be great to have some sort of scorecard to track progress on all of them, so we can bring our collective voices to bear. We all depended on Secretary Clinton to keep her eye on the big picture and keep the torch held high. As we each move our piece of the implementation forward, we will all need to cultivate and project that same kind of big-picture perspective – carrying the public with us – so the wind doesn’t go out of the sails.

BOOK, Whole

The Political Economy of Decentralization in Bolivia

RTI Bibliographic reference

Author(s): Robinson, James A.

Publisher: Scholars at Harvard, Cambridge, MA (English)

Description: The political economy of decentralization in Bolivia is discussed, including the central political groups, their interests in decentralization and the instruments used to influence the outcome. The strong demand for decentralization is explained and ways to address the political crisis are examined.

Link: http://scholar.harvard.edu/files/jrobinson/files/jr_wb_decentralization_bolivia.pdf

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