California, USA, 6 August 2006: ESRI announced that it has signed an agreement on August 6 with the Organization of American States (OAS) whereby ESRI will support two projects promoting sustainable development. Ambassador Alfonso Quinonez, the OAS Executive Secretary for Integral Development (SEDI), and Jack Dangermond, President, ESRI, signed the agreement at the 26th Annual ESRI International User Conference.
Dangermond said “ESRI is donating software and support to underpin the project, while OAS is securing financial resources to ensure that the projects remain funded and sustainable. I believe that this is a significant step in ensuring the successful implementation of a project of this scope.”
In the initial phase of the agreement, ESRI will support two critical SEDI projects: the Municipal Development Program (MuNet) and the Inter-American Biodiversity Information Network (IABIN) project.
One of the components of SEDI’s MuNet is designed to empower municipalities in Latin America by providing them with the electronic tools necessary to start building their regional cadastral and land registry systems. In addition to 15 software licenses, ESRI will provide one week of training in El Salvador for representatives from five selected municipalities in participating countries.
The Department of Sustainable Development within SEDI supports the execution of multiple-country conservation projects such as the Amazon-Andes Protected Area Metadata Database (AAPAD), which is supported by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation. AAPAD is a subcomponent of the IABIN project. Through SEDI, ESRI will provide software to 45 national parks and protected areas throughout the Amazon-Andes region with the expectation that these selected areas will share the data collected and facilitate the expansion of their GIS database. In addition to the donation of GIS software, ESRI will provide training and 400 Introduction to ArcView courses in Spanish through its Virtual Campus program.